Rapid Reaction: Cards 27, Cowboys 26
By Calvin Watkins
GLENDALE, Ariz. — This is how a game ends between two bad teams. Arizona kicker Jay Feely made a 48-yard field goal with five seconds left to give the Cardinals a dramatic 27-26 victory. A missed point-after attempt by David Buehler after a go-ahead touchdown pass gave the Cardinals the opening needed to win the game.
What it means: The Cowboys have 10 losses on the season. That’s the first time that’s happened since 2004, when a 6-10 mark finished Bill Parcells’ second season. The mistakes the team made in this one are another example of just how bad it is.
Jon Kitna gets knocked out: The Cowboys were down to one quarterback when Jon Kitna went out with a hip injury in the first half. Kinta was replaced by Stephen McGee, who completed 11 of 17 passes for 111 yards and one touchdown. McGee rallied his team, which was down four with 3:45 to play, when he completed a touchdown pass to Miles Austin. But Buehler could not extend the lead to three.
Defense is solid until the end: It appeared the defense, which has struggled the last few weeks, would give up just one big play, a 74-yard touchdown pass in the first half. It held the Cardinals’ Larry Fitzgerald to one catch, but it was the one that kept the game-winning field goal drive alive. Terence Newman and Mike Jenkins did a good job of taking him out of the game for the most part. But the Cardinals were able to get a 49-yard field goal to push their lead to 24-20 in the fourth quarter. However, another wide receiver gained over 100 yards. Andre Roberts had five catches for 110 yards and one touchdown. It’s the fifth consecutive week that the Cowboys defense allowed a receiver to get over 100 yards. Of course, the Cardinals drove the length of the field to win the game.
Run game excels: There was concern about how the Cowboys would run the ball with the return of Marion Barber, who missed last three games with a strained calf. All three backs got their touches, and when the night was over the Cowboys rushed 34 times for 183 yards. Barber did get a touchdown, for 24 yards, but committed a bad penalty by taking off his helmet to celebrate following the score.
What’s next?: The Cowboys finish the season on the road against the Eagles. The game might mean something for the Eagles — playoff seeding and NFC East title could be on the line depending on what happens Sunday. The Cowboys have decisions to make regarding the quarterback position. Should they bring one in? How healthy is Kitna?