The Dallas Cowboys (5-6) dropped their first Thanksgiving game to the Washington Redskins (5-6) in seven meetings, falling by a score of 38-31.
Dallas struck first with 30-yard Dan Baily field goal in the first, but Robert Griffin III hit wide receiver Aldrick Robinson on a 68-yard bomb just 1:13 into the second quarter and the Redskins never looked back. Robinson was pretty excited about it.
Running back Alfred Morris got in on the action to give the Skins a 14-3 lead, and then touchdowns to Pierre Garcon and Santana Moss blew the game out of proportion before the half.
RGIII chants broke out during the second quarter and the Cowboys were booed off their own field going into the locker room trailing 28-3 to the rival Redskins.
The second half wasn’t as exciting for the 'Skins, but they did do enough to ward off a Dallas comeback bid, as Dallas came within seven points after Tony Romo threw two touchdowns to Dez Bryant in the fourth quarter.
Their late comeback bid was thwarted with about three minutes left to play when the Skins esentially sealed the win when Kai Forbath hit a 48-yard field goal to give them a 10-point lead with just under three minutes remaining.
What It Means
The win brings the Redskins even with the Cowboys in the NFC East race, and do hold the head-to-head tiebreaker over the ‘Boys so far. Both teams are trailing the 6-4 New York Giants, who have a tough challenge against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night.
New York is struggling, though, dropping their last two games to the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals. A loss this week would bring Dallas and Washington back into striking distance in the NFC East.
The Dallas Cowboys must rebound to avoid free-fall mode in the divisional race. They’re currently 2-2 in divisional competition and have two remaining games against the fading Philadelphia Eagles (next week) and a season-ending showdown with the Washington Redskins.
The Week 17 finale could end up having major NFC East implications if things pan out favorably for both teams.
For the Washington Redskins, the team has bounced back from three consecutive losses to win their last two over the Eagles and Cowboys. Next week’s Monday night matchup against the New York Giants will be their biggest game of the season.
The last time the two teams met it took a last-minute bomb from Eli Manning to Victor Cruz to defeat the Redskins at the Meadowlands.
Nick Eatman from TrueBlueFanClub.com remarked about the great atmosphere prior to kickoff at Cowboys Stadium:
Easily the loudest Cowboys Stadium has ever been in the first minute of the game. Props to the fans for being here early and jacked up too— Nick Eatman (@nickeatman) November 22, 2012
ESPN' NFC East blogger Dan Graziano concurred with Cowboys beat writer Clarence Hill Jr. about Dez Bryant's outlook for this matchup:
I agree with this. RT @clarencehilljr Dez should feast on skins DBS— Dan Graziano (@espn_nfceast) November 22, 2012
ESPN Chris Mortensen added a clever comment about RGIII and the 'Skins offense regarding the unexpected rain:
Raining at Cowboys Stadium; once decision is made to open roof, it can't be closed, per rules. Or did RG3's TD pass just bring the rain?— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) November 22, 2012
Cowboys beat writer Clarence Hill Jr. saw things getting out of hand before the visiting 'Skins broke it open in the second quarter:
Cowboys down 14-3. Rg3 is doing his thing. Time for offense to respond or this could get ugly— Clarence Hill (@clarencehilljr) November 22, 2012
It's always unacceptable when home team fans cheer for a visiting player, as the NFL on ESPN account pointed out:
Chants of "RGIII" at Cowboys Stadium— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) November 22, 2012
Rob Fee from The Ellen DeGeneres Show added some humor to lighten the mood for Cowboys fans:
The Dallas Cowboys are so sad and defeated, they’re rumored to be dating John Mayer.— Rob Fee (@robfee) November 22, 2012
Stuart Scott breaks down RGIII's incredible back-shoulder throw to Santana Moss with five seconds left to play in the first half:
RGIII TD pass to Santana Moss just now was as sick and precise and perfect as a pass can be. Dats a baaadddd dude!!— Stuart Scott (@StuartScott) November 22, 2012
The ever-amusing Peyton's Head Twitter feed added some more levity and holiday spirit to the situation for discouraged Cowboys fans:
I hope you covered your leftovers better than the Cowboys cover receivers, or you're gonna waste a lot of food.— Peyton's Head (@PeytonsHead) November 23, 2012
ESPN Stats & Info gave recognition to the performance of the Redskins receiving corps:
#Redskins join Bengals and Texans as the only teams to have more than 1 game where 4 different receivers catch TD passes this season.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) November 23, 2012