Sunday, October 14, 2012
Baltimore Ravens 31, Dallas Cowboys 29
Cowboys couldn't take advantage of huge breaks in the near-come-from-behind loss.
The Dallas Cowboys snatched defeat from the jaws of victory Sunday in Baltimore, losing 31-29 to the heavily-favored Ravens. The loss dropped Dallas to 2-3, a game behind the New York Giants for first place in the NFC East. Baltimore improved to 5-1.
Down 31-23 after a Ray Rice 1-yard touchdown run with just under five minutes remaining, things looked bleak for the Cowboys. But Tony Romo led Dallas on an 18-play, 80 yard drive that culminated in a four yard touchdown pass to Dez Bryant to bring the Cowboys within two points. The two-point conversion failed, however, when Bryant dropped his third pass of the day.
Against tremendous odds, the Cowboys then recovered the ensuing onside kick -- only the second team in the NFL to successfully recover their own onside kick this season -- and were gifted a 20-yard pass interference penalty to put them within field goal range. Inexplicably, however, Romo connected with Bryant on a pointless one-yard pass and failed to use a timeout or run another play, and the resulting 51-yard field goal was missed.
Romo finished the game going 25-of-36 for 261 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. More importantly, the Dallas rushing game dominated, gaining 227 yards on the ground, the most the Ravens have given up in franchise history.
DeMarco Murray ran 14 times for 93 yards, while Felix Jones carried the ball 18 times for 92 yards and a touchdown. Dallas even got 42 yards from their third and fourth stringers after Murray left the game with an apparent injury, as Phillip Tanner had nine carries for 31 yards and Lance Dunbar had one carry for 11 late in the game.
Dallas outgained Baltimore 481 yards to 316, including 227-86 on the ground, which allowed them to hold the ball for a full 40 minutes to the Ravens' 20. Still, the Cowboys drives were cut short by 13 penalties.
Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco was a pedestrian 17-of-26 for 234 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. Ray Rice led the Ravens offense with 63 yards and two touchdowns on the ground and one catch for 43 yards through the air.
Dallas' next game is a road game against the 1-4 Carolina Panthers.