The Cowboys were up 6-3, with the ball at their own nine-yard line. They were just over five minutes away from a win. It would have been an ugly win. A dirty win. Whatever we would have called it, it would have been a Cowboys win.
The possession was set up by Jeff Heath’s second interception, shutting down a very promising Tampa Bay drive. On a third and short, Cassel looked deep for Dez Bryant but could not connect.
Dallas punted, and would need one final stand to preserve a win. In the blink of an eye, it was first and goal from the five, and fans had seen this script one too many times.
First down, handoff Doug Martin, stuffed by Tyrone Crawford. Cowboys survive another play…
Second down, incomplete pass from Winston to bring up third down. A third down with a chance to finally rise up and end the madness that has been this losing streak.
Winston took the snap and ran up the middle, jumping at the goal line and fumbling the ball. The Cowboys appeared to recover, catching the break they needed to escape Tampa with a win!
However, they invented yet another way to lose – as Jeff Heath was called for a defensive hold. The player who stepped up and intercepted two passes earlier was caught at the worst possible time.
First and goal all over again. Winston. Snap. Bootleg. Nothing but grass in front…touchdown. Bucs lead 10-6.
There was still some hope for Cassel and the Cowboys, as a penalty on the kickoff started them at the 44. After one completion to Darren McFadden, Cassel went for it all on an end zone shot to Dez Bryant.
The ball went into the arms of Bradley McDougald, who intercepted the pass – sending the Cowboys to a seventh straight loss.
Dan Bailey kicked two first-half field goals, and missed one from 48 yards as well. His first field goal came after the Cowboys were in the red zone, but a third-down sack pushed the offense back and forced them to settle for a 3-0 lead.
The Cowboys expect to welcome back Tony Romo as they travel to Miami to face the Dolphins at 2-7. Miami is coming off of a win earlier today against the Eagles.
The Eagles will welcome in the Buccaneers next week.