Arlington, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Matt Prater's 28-yard field goal as time
expired gave the Denver Broncos a 51-48 win over the Dallas Cowboys in a Texas
shootout at AT&T Stadium.
The Broncos (5-0) had tied the game on a 1-yard touchdown run from Knowshon
Moreno with 2:39 to play and Dallas (2-3) got the ball back at their own 20
with all three timeouts.
On the second play, though, Tony Romo was picked off by Danny Trevathan and
Denver got the ball back at the Dallas 24.
After a 13-yard catch by Demaryius Thomas took the ball to the Dallas 11,
Denver faced a 3rd-and-1 at the 2 and Moreno's 1-yard run gave the Broncos a
fresh set of downs and caused the Cowboys to burn their final timeout.
Peyton Manning then snapped the ball three times, losing nine yards but
running the clock down to two seconds before calling a timeout. Prater then
booted the field goal for the win.
Denver is one of three undefeated teams left in the league, joining AFC West
companion Kansas City, along with New Orleans. Denver will take on winless
Jacksonville at home next week.
Manning finished the game 33-for-42 for 414 yards and four touchdowns, but
also threw his first interception of the season. The 37-year-old also had a
rushing touchdown, his first in almost five years.
Moreno finished the game with a combined 150 yards and a touchdown, Julius
Thomas caught nine passes for 122 yards and two touchdowns and Eric Decker had
five catches for 87 yards and a score for Denver, which has scored 230 points
through its first five games this season.
Romo matched Manning through much of the game as he threw for 506 yards and
five touchdowns on 25-of-36 attempts, but had the costly turnover late in the
Three different Dallas receivers finished over 100 yards as Terrance Williams
(151), Dez Bryant (141) and Jason Witten (121) all eclipsed the mark. The
three combined for 17 catches and four touchdowns, with Cole Beasley catching
the other touchdown pass.
This game was the second-highest scoring game since the NFL-AFL merger, being
topped by a 58-48 game between Cincinnati and Cleveland in 2004 that saw the
Browns win the game.
Starting the second half with the ball and an eight-point lead, Manning led
his team on a touchdown march that was capped on a 2-yard catch by Wes Welker
for a 35-20 lead.
Dallas, though, needed just two plays to keep the game close as Romo went deep
for Williams, who caught a long pass and took it home for an 82-yard score and
a 35-27 game with 7:08 to play in the third.
The Broncos scored again on their ensuing possession, but this time it was
only three points as Prater booted a 48-yard field goal that just cleared the
left upright for a 38-27 lead with 3:23 left in the third.
Dallas kept up with the offense as the team moved 80 yards in seven plays,
with Romo and Bryant capping the drive on a 2-yard score. The conversion
attempt failed as Romo was tackled near the goal line, and it was a 38-33 game
with 14 seconds left in the third.
Needing a big play from its defense, the Cowboys got it as Morris Claiborne
made a leaping catch of a Manning pass for an interception, Manning's first of
the season, to give his team the ball back near midfield as the third quarter
drew to a close.
Needing just five plays to grab the lead back, Romo and Witten got together on
a 10-yard score and he then hit Williams for the 2-point conversion and a
41-38 lead with 13:38 to play.
A 50-yard field goal from Prater with 9:37 to play finished off Denver's
ensuing drive to tie the game and cap an 11-play, 51-yard drive.
The two sides then exchanged touchdowns on the next two drives, with Romo and
Beasley getting together on a 4-yard score, and Moreno punching it in from a
yard out with 2:39 showing.
The Cowboys started the game with the ball and held it for close to seven
minutes. A 25-yard catch by Williams moved the ball to midfield and Witten
later caught a 14-yard pass. After DeMarco Murray had a 9-yard run to set up a
1st-and-goal, Romo floated a pass to the back of the end zone where Bryant
made a leaping catch for a 7-0 lead.
Decker fumbled a catch on Denver's ensuing touch and the Cowboys recovered at
the Denver 45. Taking advantage of the short field, Romo hit Witten for 12
yards and later found the big tight end for 27 yards down to the Denver 4. The
next play saw Murray run around the left side and in for a 14-0 lead with 3:18
left in the first.
Denver came right back as Decker atoned for his previous error with a 57-yard
catch down to the Dallas 4, which was followed by a shovel pass from Manning
to Julius Thomas to make it a 14-7 game.
Dallas again put together an impressive drive, snapping 10 plays and chewing
up over five minutes of the clock, but this time the drive stalled and a 43-
yard field goal from Dan Bailey made it a 17-7 game with 12:14 left in the
Manning and the Broncos came right back to make it a three-point game as the
team moved 80 yards over seven plays with Manning hitting Decker in the end
zone from two yards out with 9:06 left in the first half.
Bryant fumbled a catch on Dallas' first snap after getting the ball back, and
the Broncos quickly made it a 21-17 game as Manning hit Thomas with a short
pass to the right and the tight end took it in from nine yards out for a 21-17
lead with 5:22 left.
That touchdown was Manning's 19th on the season and it broke a record for most
touchdown passes through the first five games that was set by Daunte Culpepper
with Minnesota in 2004.
Dallas went three-and-out on its next possession and Denver got the ball back
at its own 36.
Following a 14-yard run from Moreno, Dallas was whistled for a 21-yard pass
interference call. Facing a 3rd-and-goal at the 1, Manning faked the handoff
and went on a bootleg to the left, running into the end zone untouched to give
the team a 28-17 lead with 46 seconds left.
Romo, though, found Williams for 38 yards and that allowed Bailey to hit a 48-
yard field goal to make it a 28-20 game at the break.
Manning has gone over 300 yards in seven straight games ... It was the fourth
game in NFL history where each team scored 48 or more points ... The
interception was Romo's first since the first quarter of Week 1 ... There was
a combined 1,039 yards and 58 first downs in the game ... Manning had thrown
227 passes without an interception ... Denver has won five straight against
Dallas ... Dallas hosts Washington next Sunday.
The Sports Network