#4: Cowboys steal a win from the Lions
Week 14: Dallas Cowboys versus Detroit Lions
The Cowboys were supposed to walk into Detroit and sail through an easy victory over a stumbling team. After starting the season 6-2 the Lions had lost four straight and seemed to be a football team falling into disarray. The Cowboys also had the chance to exact their revenge on Detroit quarterback Jon Kitna, who had said some choice words about certain Dallas players in the offseason. Instead of an easy victory the Cowboys found themselves fighting for their lives and ended up putting together a thrilling come from behind victory to steal a game they had no right winning.
The Lions supposedly had a poor running game. Heck, they rushed just six times the week before. The Cowboys had one of the top rush defenses in the league and had not allowed a 100 yard runner all season long. Gear up for an uneven passing attack that was missing its top receiver and the Cowboys were golden, right? Sheesh. The lions came out with a power running attack that caught the Cowboys by surprise from the very start. Now able to run the ball at ease, the Lions started hitting receivers on intermediate and short passes taking advantage of the lack of press coverage by the Cowboys. Detroit scored on every single possession until Dallas finally stopped them as time expired in the first half. By then the Cowboys were down 20-14, and quickly fell even farther behind in the third quarter 27-14.
The offense immediately responded with a touchdown and then had to stand and watch Detroit march right back down the field yet again. Incredibly, the defense held their ground in the red zone which led to the unthinkable; Jason Hanson missing an easy 35 yard field goal that would have nearly put the game out of reach for the 'Boys. Energized with new life, Tony Romo led the Cowboys methodically down the field and were knocking on the door with just over six minutes remaining in the game, down 27-21. Romo zips a pass to Witten up the middle, who then turns and lunges for the goal line as three Lions pull him down. Somewhere in the scrum as he attempts to extend the ball across the line, it's knocked loose and the Lions recover.
Miraculously the Cowboys are able to actually hold off the Lions offense when it mattered most, and Dallas gets the ball back at their own 17 with 2:15 left to play in the game. Romo picks up where he left off and smartly moves down the field with some nifty throws to Witten. Then on third and six from the Dallas 40, Romo attempts to rush up the middle out of a broken pocket. He gets tackled from behind and fumbles the ball right into the waiting hands of a Detroit Lion. Fortunately, he kicks it out his own grip and Kyle Kosier falls on the loose ball, preserving the drive for the Cowboys.
The Cowboys quickly line right back up. They have no timeouts, it's 4th and 6 and there is still a lot of ground to cover. Romo finds Barber out of the backfield, who easily gets the first down. Following an incredible throw to Sam Hurd along the right sideline the Cowboys find themselves in the red zone yet again, this time with just 22 seconds remaining. Without any hesitation Romo looks for Witten again, firing a pass into the waiting hands of his tight end for the winning touchdown.
The win once again showed the Cowboys' resiliency and ability to overcome when it seems everything had gone wrong. The defense had bailed the offense out of a game earlier in the season and this time Romo and Company returned the favor. While the game as a whole wasn't pretty, the team stepped up when it counted most and stole a win from the Lions.