NFL: Dallas Cowboys produce late comeback to stun Cincinnati Bengals
Last Updated: December 10, 2012 1:37pm
Tony Romo: Dallas QB escapes from the pocket under pressure
Dan Bailey's 40-yard field goal as time expired sent Dallas Cowboys to a 20-19 victory over Cincinnati Bengals.
Dallas overcame a nine-point deficit in the closing minutes behind Tony Romo, who held his hand over his heart during a moment of silence to honour team-mate Jerry Brown before the kick-off.
Brown died in a car accident early Saturday. Defensive lineman Josh Brent, who was driving, remained in jail in Irving, Texas, charged with intoxication manslaughter.
The Cowboys (7-6) learned about Brown's death on their flight to Cincinnati on Saturday. Coach Jason Garrett told his team that the best way to honour him was to play well in a game with playoff implications for both teams.
A late comeback was just enough to beat the Bengals (7-6), who had won four in a row and had a chance to move into position for an AFC wild-card berth with a victory.
Instead, Romo pulled it out with another late comeback, which has been the Cowboys' way while winning four of their last five games.
Romo threw a 27-yard touchdown pass to Dez Bryant with six minutes and 35 seconds to go. Anthony Spencer's sack of Andy Dalton forced a punt, and Romo completed four passes on the drive to Bailey's winning kick.
Defensive tackle Jason Hatcher held up Brown's No. 53 jersey on the sideline as the Cowboys headed onto the field to celebrate.
Romo finished 25-of-43 for 268 yards with a touchdown, an interception and three sacks. DeMarco Murray converted a third-and-5 play to extend the final drive and ended up with 53 yards on 21 carries.
Newcomer Josh Brown kicked field goals of 25, 33, 25 and 52 yards for Cincinnati, who wasted an opportunity to move ahead of Pittsburgh for the second AFC wild-card.
In the end, a defence that has allowed only three touchdowns in the last four games couldn't hold on. And the Bengals made it tough on themselves by using all three of their timeouts early in the second half, leaving them unable to stop the clock on Dallas' final drive.
Dalton was 20 of 33 for 206 yards with five sacks, one touchdown and an interception that Brandon Carr returned 37 yards to set up Murray's 1-yard touchdown dive in the second quarter.