Dallas, TX — On a day of giving thanks, the Dallas Cowboys defense had a lot to be thankful for after a three-interception performance versus the Washington Redskins.
The Redskins were without starting quarterback Alex Smith after he injured his leg last Sunday and the offense struggled to move the ball downfield in the 31-23 loss. The Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli had an effective game plan that limited Colt McCoy’s options.
McCoy finished the game going 24-of-38, 268 passing yards, two touchdowns, and three interceptions. Dallas cornerbacks Xavier Woods, Anthony Brown and defensive lineman Demarcus Lawrence each recorded an interception in the victory. The Cowboys pressured McCoy successfully and sacked the quarterback three times. He finished the game with only one pass longer than 20 yards.
Offensively, Amari Cooper had a breakout performance hauling in two touchdowns, eight receptions, and 180 yards. 90 of those yards came on one play in the third quarter, after quarterback Dak Prescott was able to hit Cooper in stride, and the receiver used his speed to outrun the defenders to the end zone.
Cooper’s other touchdown also came in the third quarter, hauling in a short pass but his defender slipped and he was able to run into the end zone.
The Cowboys were able to score on the opening possession of the game as running back Ezekiel Elliott ran it in from 16 yards out for his only touchdown of the game. He finished the game with 121 rushing yards on 26 carries.
Washington tied things up at 7 apiece midway through the second quarter as McCoy hit a wide open Vernon Davis for a 54-yard reception. The 13-year veteran was able to blow by linebacker Damien Wilson for the score.
The Cowboys responded with a 14-play drive that ended in a field goal, giving Dallas a 10-7 lead at the half.
The Redskins struck first in the second half thanks to some great field position and McCoy was able to hit Trey Quin for a 10-yard touchdown.
Dallas responded with a six play, 75-yard drive that resulted in six thanks to Cooper’s 40-yard catch and run. After forcing a Redskins punt, the Cowboys scored again on a two-play drive that was capped off by Cooper’s 90-yard touchdown.
McCoy threw an interception on the ensuing possession and Dallas was set up with great field position. Prescott was able to run it in from five yards out and give the Cowboys a commanding 31-13 lead.
The Redskins again got great field position on the kick return, and McCoy led a 45-yard touchdown drive that Kapri Bibbs capped off scoring a 1-yard rushing touchdown. The Redskins had their opportunity to cut it to a one-score game after forcing a turnover on downs but McCoy threw his third interception with under five minutes left in the game.
Washington was able to convert on a field goal with under two minutes, but could not recover the onside kick, putting an end to their comeback hopes.
Prescott finished the game with 289 passing yards, 18 rush yards, and three total touchdowns.
Jordan Reed was the Redskins leading receiver with six receptions and 75 yards.
Both teams move to 6-5 on the year and are tied for first place in the NFC East division.