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  • Rams crumble against Cowboys

    By Jaime Aron

    IRVING, Texas (AP) -- When Tony Romo began chasing a snap that flew over his head, two thoughts raced through his mind.

    "Don't give up a touchdown," he said, "and don't get killed."

    After making things worse by knocking the ball farther away, Romo finally grabbed it 33 yards behind the line of scrimmage. Yet instead of falling on the ball or throwing it away, Romo took off running.

    And running. And running.

    By following his blockers and making a guy miss on his own, Romo recovered all the yards he'd lost, plus gained four more -- exactly what the Dallas Cowboys needed on a third-and-3 and in the midst of a sluggish start. That sparked the Cowboys to a 35-7 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Sunday.

    "That was a trick play we were working on," coach Wade Phillips said, laughing.

    Romo's wild, Staubach-like scramble came just before halftime of a tied game. He capped that drive with -- what else? -- a 15-yard touchdown run. Then he opened the second half with TD passes of 59, 37 and 17 yards, turning what had been a tight early game into yet another easy win for undefeated Dallas and another frustrating loss for winless St. Louis.

    "When I first kicked it, I thought, `Uh-oh, maybe I should've fallen on it,"' Romo said. "You have a sense that people are around you or you don't. And no one was around me."

    Offensive coordinator Jason Garrett said his sentiment during the play was similar to a basketball coach seeing a player put up a 30-footer.

    "You say, `No, no ... Hey! Way to go!"' Garrett said.

    The Cowboys are 4-0 for the first time since 1995, the year of their last Super Bowl title. The Rams are 0-4 for the first time since 2002, when they opened with five straight losses coming off a Super Bowl loss.

    Dallas is literally getting better every week of Phillips' tenure. The defense has gone from giving up four touchdowns in the opener, to three, to none Sunday (the Rams' only score came on special teams). The Cowboys offense, which came in as the highest-scoring in the league, has widened the margin of victory every week.

    "Four-and-oh is nice," Phillips said. "It doesn't put us in the Super Bowl, it doesn't put us in the playoffs. But it's good that we're there."

    The Rams are another story.

    They were without six injured starters and two more suspended, then lost several more to injuries, including Isaac Bruce, who had guaranteed a victory.

    Quarterback Marc Bulger played despite two broken ribs and his patchwork line wasn't able to protect him from DeMarcus Ware (one sack, lots of pressure) and Greg Ellis (1.5 sacks in his first game since tearing an Achilles' tendon in November). Bulger went 11-of-24 for 114 yards and threw an interception on his final play. He was pulled with 2:16 left in the third quarter and Dallas up by 28.

    Coach Scott Linehan said Bulger remains the starter, then became testy when asked about his team's offensive woes, such as going more than 30 straight drives without a touchdown.

    "We're looking for solutions," Linehan said. "What do you want me to say? We haven't scored, we haven't executed, we've played very poorly on offense."

    Romo was 21-of-33 for 339 yards with three touchdowns and an interception. He ran three times for 24 yards because his long scramble counted for only four no matter how much territory he actually covered.

    The play started at the 50, with center Andre Gurode sending a shotgun snap to the 35. Romo caught up to it at the 28, but went into the kind of go-for-broke mindset that drove Bill Parcells batty, leading to a bobble that set him up for the kind of embarrassment he felt after botching a potential winning field goal in the playoffs.

    The stakes were much lower Sunday, but this play did come at a crucial time. The score was tied and the Rams were fired up by an 85-yard punt return by Dante Hall. If Romo was stopped, Dallas would have to punt to Hall again.

    Romo got control around the 17, turned left and headed back up the field. He juked Raonall Smith around the 30, then kept going until stepping out of bounds at the St. Louis 46.

    "That play will go down as one of the greatest plays in the history of the NFL," Ellis said.

    The play was so mentally and physically draining, a time out was called. By St. Louis.

    "I was like, `Thank you! I appreciate it!"' Romo said.

    Five snaps later, Romo ran for a touchdown that put the Cowboys up 14-7. Dallas broke it open with three third-quarter touchdowns in only 11 plays.

    Patrick Crayton caught two TD passes and a career-high 184 yards receiving. Jason Witten caught a TD pass and Julius Jones ran for one.

    The only bad news for Dallas was NFL interception leader Anthony Henry spraining his right ankle in the first quarter.

    Notes: Rams rookie RB Brian Leonard had 58 yards on 16 carries in his first start. ... Dallas still doesn't have a first-quarter touchdown. ... St. Louis got its first interception of the year, but didn't get any points off it because Jeff Wilkins missed a 28-yard field goal.

  • #2
    Re: Rams crumble against Cowboys

    We just got our 1st INT 4 games in, WOW!
    What was Bruce thinking?


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    • RamWraith
      Big Loss Leaves Cowboys Flustered
      by RamWraith
      By Bill Coats

      A difficult week for the Dallas Cowboys reached its nadir Sunday, when the Rams pounded out a 34-14 victory at the Edward Jones Dome. The Rams' two-game winning "streak" mirrors the Cowboys' two-game slide.

      In an overtime loss to Arizona last week, Dallas quarterback Tony Romo broke the little finger on his right (throwing) hand. He was replaced by 40-year-old Brad Johnson, who slogged through a rugged outing Sunday.

      Speedy rookie running back Felix Jones and punter Mat McBriar also were lost to injuries. Then cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones was slapped with a league suspension Tuesday of at least a month for his involvement in a late-night scuffle with his own bodyguard at a Dallas hotel.

      Pacman had just landed a starting role because Pro Bowl cornerback Terence Newman had groin surgery Oct. 10.

      Suddenly, the Cowboys, popular preseason picks to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl, are 4-3 and fighting to resurrect their flagging season.

      "I'm angry, disappointed and embarrassed," second-year Cowboys coach Wade Phillips said. "We didn't want to get beat at all. But we shouldn't get beat like that, for sure. ... This is the worst game this team has played since I've been here."

      Said tight end Jason Witten: "To be 4-3 at this point ... nobody would've thought that."

      Cowboys owner Jerry Jones admitted that he but not his team, he stressed took the Rams too lightly. "I really did think when I walked out of our dressing room for the second half, I said, 'We'll get a couple of scores and we'll be back in it,'" Jones said. "I give the Rams the credit for that. I was just thinking a little lighter than I should have about this ballgame."

      The Cowboys outgained the Rams 341 yards to 325. But much of the Dallas real estate was gathered well after the outcome was decided, and an uncharacteristically sloppy performance helped keep the Cowboys in arrears most of the afternoon.

      Defensively, the Rams gobbled up four turnovers and sacked Johnson three times.

      "We're not even giving ourselves the chance to put points on the board," Witten said. "Seven points against this team? We're not running the ball, we're not giving the quarterback time, and we're not getting open like we should. ... It's unacceptable."

      Offensively, the Rams posted easily their highest point total of the year, prospering behind quarterback Marc Bulger's best day of the season, and running back Steven Jackson's 160-yard rushing output and three touchdowns.

      "We obviously need to play better," linebacker Greg Ellis said. "We just need to stick together. Not a lot more needs to be said."

      Wide receiver Terrell Owens insisted...
      -10-20-2008, 04:24 AM
    • RamWraith
      Rams cave in 3rd quarter
      by RamWraith
      By Bill Coats

      IRVING, TEXAS Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett apparently sensed trouble brewing. Although his unit was seventh in the NFL in total defense heading into Week 4, he expressed concern about its lack of consistency.

      "We've got to do it for four quarters," he said. "We can't do it for 3 or 3 1/2 quarters; we need to play the whole game."

      Haslett's fears materialized Sunday in a 35-7 spanking at Texas Stadium. The Dallas Cowboys, whose 38.7-point average was the league's best, led only 14-7 at the half. Then they got serious.

      The Cowboys (4-0) found the end zone on each of their three possessions in the third quarter. And they got there with shocking ease: drives of 59 yards on three plays, 52 yards on three plays and 80 yards on five plays. Advertisement

      "They're a great, great offense," linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa said. "You've got to stay with it for four quarters. We did good for two of them, but in the third, they really opened up. They showed why they're the No. 1 offense."

      The Cowboys piled up 502 total yards, the most by any team against the Rams in two seasons under Haslett and coach Scott Linehan.

      "We haven't been able to put a game together yet," cornerback Ron Bartell said. "Guys are working hard, the coaches are coaching hard. We just haven't been able to get it done."

      Veteran cornerback Lenny Walls, who started on the left side for the third week in a row in place of injured Tye Hill (back), was a glaring victim of the Dallas eruption. He was burned by wide receiver Patrick Crayton on back-to-back series for TDs of 59 and 37 yards.

      On the first, Walls unwisely went for the ball with the Rams blitzing on third and 10. He arrived late, and Crayton broke free and sprinted unimpeded the rest of the way.

      "I got a pretty good break, actually," Walls said. "I felt like he would've got a first down catching it anyway. I went for the ball, didn't really secure the tackle, and when you're in an all-out like blitz like that, there's nothing else behind you. If you don't make that tackle, he's gone."

      Crayton got past Walls on the next possession, hauled in Romo's toss and was off again. Walls said his calves locked up as he tried to stay with Crayton.

      "I was dehydrated a little bit, cramping up, before the first half was over," Walls explained. "I came in at the half, tried to get an IV and get myself back together. But obviously I didn't really recover."

      Walls then pulled himself from the game. Rookie Jonathan Wade finished for him.

      "I had to shut it down," Walls said. "I'm one guy that never, ever wants to come out of a game. But at that point, knowing I couldn't...
      -10-01-2007, 05:52 AM
    • RamWraith
      Rams Use Defense To Win In "Big D"
      by RamWraith
      POSTED: 9:19 pm PST January 1, 2006

      Irving, TX -- Arlen Harris' fourth-quarter touchdown helped the St. Louis Rams overcome the Dallas Cowboys, 20-10, in the season finale for both clubs at Texas Stadium.

      Aveion Cason added a touchdown and 65 yards rushing for the Rams (6-10), who ended a four-game slide. Jamie Martin threw for 158 yards on 19-of-32 passing for St. Louis, which won just two of its final eight games.

      The Rams' defense held the Cowboys offense in check, intercepting Dallas quarterback Drew Bledsoe twice and forcing two more turnovers. The 10 points allowed were a season-best for St. Louis.

      Bledsoe finished 18-of-39 for 242 yards with a TD for Dallas (9-7), which ended the season losing four of six to narrowly miss out on the postseason.

      Keyshawn Johnson, who also lost a fumble, had five catches for 97 yards for the Cowboys, who were eliminated from playoff contention when Washington and Carolina collected victories earlier on Sunday.

      With the game tied at 10-10, Pisa Tinoisamoa sacked Bledsoe, forcing a fumble that was recovered by the Rams' Anthony Hargrove at the Dallas 40-yard line just 1:29 into the fourth quarter.

      The turnover was crucial as St. Louis turned it into the game-winning points. Four plays into the drive, Harris burst in from one yard out for a seven- point cushion.

      Dallas had trouble moving the ball after that. With just over two minutes left in the game, O.J. Atogwe intercepted a Bledsoe pass and returned it 42 yards to the Dallas three-yard line.

      The pick resulted in a 20-yard field goal by Jeff Wilkins that sealed the victory with 1:05 left.

      The Rams held the Cowboys to just 57 yards rushing.

      The Cowboys started the scoring when Jason Witten caught a 19-yard touchdown pass from Bledsoe with 2:36 left in the first quarter, capping a six-play, 56- yard drive.

      Forty-five seconds into the second, Wilkins cut the deficit to 7-3 when he hit a 49-yard field goal. The eight-play, 40-yard drive bridged the first and second quarters.

      The Rams then went ahead 10-7 with 1:52 left in the first half. Cason ran in from eight yards out, ending an eight-play, 54-yard march.

      However, St. Louis couldn't keep Dallas down, as the Cowboys' Shaun Suisham hit a 22-yard field goal to tie the game with three seconds remaining in the half.

      Game Notes

      Dallas ended the season 5-3 at home...St. Louis went 3-5 on the road...St. Louis RB Steven Jackson was inactive for the game because of a hip pointer...Marshall Faulk had 25 yards rushing for the Rams...Julius Jones led Dallas' rushing attack with 35 yards on 15 carries...St. Louis' Torry Holt had 40 yards receiving on four catches.
      -01-02-2006, 04:52 AM
    • Nick
      CBS: Romo throws two touchdown passes as Cowboys edge Rams for preseason win
      by Nick
      Romo throws two touchdown passes as Cowboys edge Rams for preseason win wire reports
      Aug. 26, 2012

      ARLINGTON, Texas -- Tony Romo didn't need much time or his top three pass-catchers to show he's ready for the regular season.

      Playing only a quarter in what was supposed to be his most extensive action of the preseason, Romo threw for 198 yards with two long touchdowns to Dwayne Harris, who got behind defenders and went through them to score in the Dallas Cowboys' 20-19 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Saturday night.

      "Tony is an outstanding player and he's done it with a lot of different kinds of guys," coach Jason Garrett said. "It's nice to see him play well and play in a good rhythm with the younger guys."

      Even with a preseason game left to play, Dallas (2-1) is already starting to turn its attention to the regular-season opener Sept. 5 at the defending Super Bowl champion Giants. Romo isn't expecting to play at home against Miami on Wednesday night, a week before that game in New York.

      "I do know I've been preparing for New York for a while," Romo said. "We'll just get back to studying on them and take it from there."

      The Cowboys are confident receivers Miles Austin (hamstring) and Dez Bryant (right knee tendinitis) will be ready to play against the Giants. Seven-time Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten, who sustained a lacerated spleen in the preseason opener nearly two weeks ago, is uncertain.

      Their absence wasn't an issue against the Rams (1-2), who lost 34-7 at Cowboys Stadium last October and have been inconsistent this preseason under new coach Jeff Fisher.

      Romo completed 9-of-13 passes while playing three series, pushing the Cowboys to a 17-3 lead.

      Harris finished with three catches for 118 yards and Kevin Ogletree, going into his fourth season, caught five passes for 75 yards.

      "Injuries provide opportunity. With Dez and Miles being out, those guys have gotten more of an opportunity than they would have otherwise," Garrett said. "I think they've taken advantage of it."

      Kyle Orton was 9 of 12 for 99 yards playing both series in the second quarter.

      Harris, a sixth-round pick last year now in the mix to be the No. 3 receiver after Austin and Bryant, got behind the Rams' secondary for a 61-yard TD that put Dallas up 10-0 less than 9 minutes into the game.

      On the next Cowboys possession, after Greg Zuerlein kicked the first of two field goals longer than 50 yards for St. Louis, Harris caught a pass coming across the middle of the field.

      When Harris got close to the left sideline, where it looked like he might go out of bounds or get tackled, he instead split defensive backs. Craig Dahl and Janoris Jenkins ran into each other instead of the receiver near the 15, and Harris sprinted...
      -08-26-2012, 06:25 AM
    • MauiRam
      Rams face Dallas team seeking the end zone ..
      by MauiRam
      BY JIM THOMAS Friday, October 21, 2011 12:25 am

      No NFL team has lived on the edge of victory and defeat quite like the Dallas Cowboys this season. All five of their games have been decided by four points or less. And with the scrutiny America's Team gets on a daily basis, it has been a well-chronicled, wildly fluctuating roller-coaster ride from week to week.

      Just two examples:

      Quarterback Tony Romo has been a superhero, leading the Cowboys to a 27-24 overtime victory over San Francisco in Week 2 despite a cracked rib and a punctured lung.

      Two weeks later, Romo was a dud, throwing three second-half interceptions in a 34-30 loss to Detroit, a game in which the Cowboys blew a 27-3 third-quarter lead.

      The winless Rams (0-5) can only hope Dallas and Romo are in dud mode Sunday at Cowboys Stadium. Despite lots of potential firepower on offense, the numbers don't add up for the Cowboys (2-3). On one hand, Dallas is seventh in the league in total offense, which ranks teams according to yards gained. Somehow all those yards have produced only 10 touchdowns this season.

      They are second-to-last in red zone offense, with only six TDs in 18 red zone trips. That 33 percent success rate trails only you guessed it the Rams, who have scored TDs on just 25 percent (three of 12) of their red zone opportunities.

      Hampered by changes and injuries on the offensive line, the Dallas running game has been close to nonexistent, ranking 27th in yards per game. On top of that, the Cowboys' top back and leading rusher, speedy Felix Jones, is expected to miss Sunday's game because of a high ankle sprain. Far removed from the glory days of Emmitt Smith and before that, Tony Dorsett Dallas has only one rushing touchdown this season. That's tied for second worst in the league with the Rams. (Kansas City has yet to score a rushing TD.)

      How can the Cowboys get their running game going?

      "Just got to keep banging away at it," coach Jason Garrett said. "Got to get better up front, got to get better as runners, and got to get better at the tight end spot, the receiver spot, fullback spot. It takes everybody, and we've just got to keep banging away."

      Another thing that's keeping the Cowboys out of the end zone is turnovers. They have coughed up the football 12 times via interception or lost fumble. Only Philadelphia, with 17 turnovers, has more in the NFL.

      One less turnover here, better red zone execution there, and the Cowboys easily could have another victory or two or three.

      "You just have to execute at different times," Romo said. "We've won a couple of really close games and executed well, and then we've lost one or two. So we're just going to do the little things better when they come."

      The Rams' defense is trying to make sure it's not...
      -10-21-2011, 10:26 AM