Cowboys 14

(6-4, 3-3 away)

Redskins 10

(6-4, 3-3 home)

Coverage: NBC

8:15 PM ET, November 16, 2008

FedEx Field, Landover, MD 

1 2 3 4 T
DAL 0 7 0 714
WSH 7 3 0 010

Top Performers

Passing: T. Romo (DAL) - 198 YDS, 1 TD, 2 INT

Rushing: M. Barber (DAL) - 24 CAR, 114 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: C. Cooley (WSH) - 7 REC, 47 YDS

Romo, Newman return as Cowboys topple Redskins to send message

Associated Press

LANDOVER, Md. -- Tony Romo had to learn how to throw with four fingers instead of five, and how to celebrate with his left hand instead of his right.

He was successful on both counts Sunday night, returning just in time to help rescue the Dallas Cowboys' season. His 25-yard pass to rookie Martellus Bennett with 10½ minutes to play was the go-ahead touchdown in a 14-10 victory over the Washington Redskins, a must-win-come-true for a team that had been reeling without its offensive leader.

Fast Facts

• Marion Barber picked up 66 of his 114 yards in the fourth quarter when the Cowboys held the ball for 10:52.

• Tony Romo threw for 198 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions in his return. He now has 10 career TD passes against the Redskins and a scoring pass in 26 of his last 27 regular season games overall.

• After starting the season by throwing 249 passes without an interception (second most all-time), Washington QB Jason Campbell has now thrown three in his last 58 attempts.

• Clinton Portis crossed the 1,000-yard rushing mark in the game, his sixth career 1,000-yard season.

-- ESPN research

• Rapid Reaction

"Are we back to the old Cowboys?" receiver Terrell Owens said. "Who knows? But this is definitely a step in the right direction."

Wearing a splint under the heavy bandage on his right hand to protect the broken pinkie that cost him three games, Romo overcame a pair of first-half interceptions to complete 19 of 27 passes for 198 yards. To compensate for the injury, he has spent weeks mastering a new throwing technique -- which failed him on his one major mistake, a throw behind Owens that was intercepted deep in Redskins territory in the first half.

"You really wouldn't be reading the tea leaves right if you didn't understand that it took a lot of work on his part," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said, "to where he could put the pressure with the four [fingers] rather than the pressure with using the little finger."

So when second-round draft pick Bennett showed remarkable concentration to snag the big touchdown catch over safety Chris Horton while on the run at the goal line, Romo bounced up and down like a kid -- and had to remember to do his high-fives and backslaps with his left hand.

"I felt like the most awkward individual, when I'm like 'Yeah!'" said Romo, raising his right hand and then lowering it quickly. When he did, the hand hit a reporter's tape recorder. Fortunately, no harm was done.

"See?" Romo said with a laugh. "There it is."

The victory gave the Cowboys a season split against their NFC East rival and improved their record to 6-4, tied with the Redskins and a half-game ahead of the Philadelphia Eagles. The threesome can virtually give up on catching the division-leading New York Giants (9-1), putting them into what promises to be a tight battle for wild-card berths over the final six weeks of the season.

Now it's the Redskins' turn to do some soul-searching. They've been held to one touchdown over their last two games and have lost back-to-back contests for the first time this season.

"This is the time in the season where those teams that actually are going upward start making that climb, if you will," Washington coach Jim Zorn said. "And we're not making -- you know, we haven't made the climb."

Dallas had gone 2-4 after a 3-0 start and performed miserably on offense during Romo's absence. Fortuitously, last week's bye gave Romo, cornerback Terence Newman and left guard Kyle Kosier a chance to heal.

If anything, Newman's return was more impressive than Romo's. Back after missing five games with a sports hernia, he had a second-half interception deep in Cowboys territory and shut down Santana Moss, holding the Redskins' best receiver to 29 yards on five catches. Newman batted away a pass to Moss on fourth-and-4 at the Dallas 37 with 6:40 remaining, ending Washington's final drive.

"He was challenged, and I knew he was the type of guy who was going to meet a challenge," Dallas coach Wade Phillips said. "Terence, you could tell in practice he was ready to go."

After Newman's interception, the Cowboys ran out the clock with 11 straight plays involving Marion Barber. He finished with 114 yards on 24 carries and a 2-yard touchdown run that tied it at 7 late in the first half.

Clinton Portis, who wasn't expected to play due to a sprained knee, carried 15 times for 68 yards and went over 1,000 yards for the season for the Redskins. Jason Campbell went 22-for-34 for 162 yards with an interception and a touchdown -- a 2-yard pass to fullback Mike Sellers on Washington's opening drive.

Romo was picked off twice trying to hit Owens in Redskins territory in the first half. The first one was Romo's fault -- the wayward throw went straight to cornerback DeAngelo Hall, making his Redskins debut after getting cut two weeks ago by the Oakland Raiders. The second one was jarred from T.O. by cornerback Carlos Rogers; Rocky McIntosh caught the deflection for his first career interception.

NFL GameDay: Cowboys vs. Redskins highlights Video

Highlights of the Cowboys 14-10 victory over the Redskins from NFL GameDay.

But Romo wasn't deterred.

"We had to have this one," Romo said. "I told the guys the time is now. It's a show-me game, we had to go out there and show ourselves and show each other that we can play good football."

Game notes

Redskins greats Darrell Green and Art Monk received their Hall of Fame rings in a pregame ceremony. ... Washington injuries: WR Antwaan Randle El (jammed neck), RB Ladell Betts (aggravated sprained knee) and LB Marcus Washington (sprained ankle). ... After being embarrassed by Terrible Towels waved by visiting Pittsburgh Steelers fans at the last home game, the Redskins distributed 50,000 "Redskins Rally Rags" in an effort to restore their home-field advantage.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

1st Downs1714
Passing 1st downs
Rushing 1st downs
1st downs from penalties
3rd down efficiency
4th down efficiency
Total Plays5556
Total Yards315228
Yards per play5.74.1
Total Drives910
Yards per pass
Interceptions thrown
Sacks-Yards Lost
Rushing Attempts
Yards per rush
Red Zone (Made-Att)1-21-2
Fumbles lost
Interceptions thrown
Defensive / Special Teams TDs00

Passing Leaders

Randle El0/100.0000-0

Rushing Leaders


Receiving Leaders


Scoring Summary

wshTD7:38Mike Sellers 2 Yard Pass From Jason Campbell (Shaun Suisham Kick is Good)
Drive info: 10 plays, 49 yds, 5:10
dalTD1:06Marion Barber 2 Yard Run (Nick Folk Kick is Good)
Drive info: 7 plays, 80 yds, 3:40
wshFG0:09Shaun Suisham 41 Yard Field Goal is Good
Drive info: 5 plays, 14 yds, 0:57
dalTD10:43Martellus Bennett 25 Yard Pass From Tony Romo (Nick Folk Kick is Good)
Drive info: 8 plays, 67 yds, 4:12