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AMERICAN FOOTBALL

Cowboys romp to 10 in a row as Redskins struggle

Dallas Cowboys extended their franchise regular-season record with a 10th straight victory, beating the Redskins 31-26 on Thursday thanks to rookies Rookies Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott. Nadal vs Thiem

Dak Prescott of the Dallas Cowboys throws a pass
TOM PENNINGTON AFP

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Final: Dallas Cowboys 31-26 Washington Redskins: Live coverage

The game in numbers: Dak Prescott was efficient with 17 from 24 passing attempts and one touchdown. Elliott had 20 carries for 97 yards and two touchdowns. Meanwhile, Kirk Cousins was successful on 41 of 53 attempts with three touchdowns but still ended up on the losing side.

That is the game, folks. The Cowboys romp to their 10th win in a row while the Redskins struggle, to an extent, to 6-4. Nobody gave the Redskins a chance and maybe they were right because the Cowboys were always in control of this game and with impressive displays from the two rookies, Prescott and Elliott, they also claim the top seed in the NFC and home field advantage. 

As it happened

Fourth quarter

01:44 | Beasley with a first down and that definitely ends it for the Redskins! They don't even call their second time-out.

01:42 | Elliott first down and that pretty much ends it for the Redskins. They have used their second time-out and there are just 1:47 remaining.

01:39 | Onside kick attempted by the Redskins and it fails as it goes out of bounds. Expect the Cowboys to run down the clock now..

01:36 | Another Cousins to Reed connection! This time for a TD and the Redskins are back in this game. just five points in it now. Cowboys 30-26 Redskins.

01:34 | Cousins to Reed for seven yards. first down and the Redskins are driving! 

01:32 | Cousins almost fumbles the snap but sneaks over the line for a first down. 

01:29 | Crowder with a catch on third down and the Redskins are still alive. Thompson catches the pass and manages to get out of bounds to stop the clock. 3:32 remaining.

01:28 | Redskins driving but they get called for a false start. 4:00 remaining.

01:20 | Cowboys TD. Elliott with a four yard run to put the Cowboys up by 11 with the help of a Bailey extra point.

01:15 | Prescott rushes for the first down and is met with a helmet from Whitner and gets a 15 yard personal foul call.

01:13 | In a strange move, with 9.22 remaining in the game, the Redskins go for an onside kick but fail to recover it. Cowboys ball.

01:09 | Redskins on third and one now. DeSean Jackson finds his way into the endzone! 67 yards. What a catch! What a throw!

01:00 | Prescott with a touchdown run. Fakes it to Elliott and takes it in himself.

24:54 | Redskins go for two points but the pass is picked off by Sean Lee. Redskins still down by five.

24:53 | Cousins finds Reed yet again for five yards and a touchdown.

Third quarter

24:48 | Cousins finds Reed at the three-yard line. That is the catch of the day! A Redskins touchdown here makes this very interesting.

24:47 | Cousins finds Garcon for the first down on the sideline.

24:46 | Cousins to Jackson but he is short of a first down. Jay Gruden going for it here early on fourth down in the third quarter.

24:44 | Cousins finds Carrier for a short gain.

24:41 | Thompson gets the Redskins a first down with an excellent second effort!

24:36 | Prescott goes long to Williams but he can't connect. Excellent coverage by the Redskins cornerback. Cowboys forced to punt.

24:32 | Prescott hands off to Elliott for a short gain.

24:30 | Prescott finds Witten for 21 yards before rushing for nine yards.

24:26 | Sean Lee makes a tackle on Thompson on third down and the lads agree in the office here that Sean Lee is an animal! He is just everywhere. Redskins punt.

24:24 | A deep shot by Cousins in search of Jackson does not land. The Redskins with a 3rd and long now after a loss for Thompson on second down.

Can the Redskins make a comeback? They receive the ball to start the second half.

Second quarter: Cowboys lead 17-6

24:00 | Just two seconds remain as the Cowboys take a knee, happy with their 11 point lead going into the second half.

23:58 | Hopkins is good from close range! He pulls the Redskins back to within 11 with his field goal.

23:57 | Cousins throws it to nobody on third down! Garcon in the vicinity but he wasn't moving in the direction of the ball.

23:55 | Okay, Cousins has the Redskins inside the Cowboys' five. Catch by Crowder sets them up with 11 seconds left in the quarter.

23:53 | DeSean Jackson picks up a first in the redzone. Cousins has the Redskins moving the chains but can they convert.

23:52 | Vernon Davis with a catch as he picks up a first for the Redskins and manages to get out of bounds. 1:13 remaining in the first half.

23:50 | Crowder again for 14 yards. He is dragged out of bounds as the clock stops and the Redskins build.

23:49 | A short swing pass to Crowder gives the Redskins some momentum. Can they score before the end of the quarter?

23:45 | Prescott finds Williams in the end zone and it is a touchdown as the WR manages to get both feet down before going out of bounds. Excellent effort by Prescott to find his target having been flushed out of the pocket but an equally excellent effort by Williams to get his feet down.

23:43 | Prescott with a keeper as he fakes a hand-off to Elliott and he gains 18 yards. This man can do no wrong!

2 Minute Warning! Dez Bryant catches the ball for 10 yards and the Cowboys are closing in on another score.

23:40 | Prescott finds Beasley and he gets out of bounds with 2:50 remaining in the second.

23:39 | Prescott hands it off to Elliott and he rushes for a first down.

Jordan Reed is out for the rest of the game with a shoulder injury.

23:35 | Hopkins misses for the second time today from a field goal. 55 yards this time and the Cowboys still lead by seven.

23:33 | Harris with a catch on the sideline that gives the Redskins another first down. Can they level this thing up?

23:31 | Pierre Garcon with a big gain! Cousins hooks up with one of his favourite targets for 22 yards.

23:25 | Bailey's field goal attempt from 46 yards is good. Cowboys back up by seven.

23:24 | Pass to Bryant is almost picked off. The WR is looking for a flag that is not forthcoming. Bailey with the FG attempt.

23:23 | And now the Cowboys get back to their running game with Zeke on a short gain.

23:22 | Prescott on 3rd and long and he CONNECTS with Beasley. First down Cowboys. 

23:20 | Dez gets some seperation and picks up 14 yards and a first down for the Cowboys.

Washington with 130 total yards to Dallas' 85 but the Cowboys still lead.

23:17 | Prescott and the Cowboys on the move again. He lands a nine yard pass to Dez Bryant this time.

23:14 | Hopkins with a chance to redeem himself with a 23-yard field goal and he lands it. Washington get on the scoreboard.

23:10 | Cousins lobs it into the endzone but no receiver within reaching distance.

First quarter

23:07 | Former San Francisco 49er Vernon Davis picks up 22 yards as Cousins lands a very nice pass to the tight end.

23:06 | Crowder picks up 38 yards as Cousins starts to heat up.

23:05 | Garcon for five as he squares up with some Cowboys defenders, getting into the Thanksgiving spirit!

23:04 | Washington get a first down after a good run on second down by Rob Kelley.

23:03 | Cousins goes long to DeSean Jackson but the wide receiver stops mid-route. No flag and it's second down.

22:59 | Butler looking for pass interference and looking at the replays, he might have a case. Regardless, Cowboys forced to punt with three minutes left in the first and with a lead of seven.

22:55 | Hopkins misses with a 43 yard field goal! Cowboys will get the ball back and look to build on their lead.

22:53 | Cousins with a little pitch pass to Crowder but he is stopped on third and long. Poor by Washington, encouraging stop by the Cowboys D!

22:51 | Cousins pressured on a 2nd and 13 as the Cowboys look to stall the Redskins. Holding penalty on the Redskins o-line makes it a 2nd and 23!

22:46 | Vernon Davis catches a pass from Kirk Cousins. Followed up by another catch and first down by Rob Kelley.

22:42 | TOUCHDOWN! Well, that was quick! The Cowboys take the lead with a four yard rush by Elliot. Cowboys lead 7-0.

22:40 | Prescott with a fake hand-off and lands a pass to Cole Beasley for a dozen yards. 

22:39 | Elliot is certainly the first one to eat as he picks up 12 yards on his first carry! Happy Thanksgiving, Zeek!

22:37 | Dak Prescott hands it off and Whitehead picks up 15 yards on his first carry. First down and Washington will have to keep an eye on those tricks plays.

22:32 | A beautiful version of the star-spangled banner on the trumpet! I am ready for some football..

22:30 | We are going live with this thing! Can the Cowboys live up to expectations or will the Washington ruin their Thanksgiving party?

Sam Bradford's interception proves vital as the Lions get to 7-4 over the Vikings' 6-5. Who would have thought, at the start of the year, that these two teams would be battling for top spot in the north?

21:37 | Matt Stafford takes a knee and Prater lines up for a field goal. And it is GOOD! The Lions take the lead in the NFC North with that kick. Final score 16-13 to Detroit over the Minnesota Vikings.

21:35 | Sam Bradford is intercepted. Slay jumps Thielen's route and the Vikings turn over the ball with just 30 seconds left in the game! Looks like we are heading for overtime.

21:34 | Illegal formation. Vikings have a first down but it is ruled out with that penalty. 3rd and 7 now as they try again for a first down.

21:28 | 'Madre Mia' is the cry from the TV commentator and he is right! Kendricks meets Riddick in the backfield for a loss. Matt Prater kicks a field goal as a result. We are all square again 13-13.

21:27 | Stafford with a pass that is too long for Marvin Jones. 3rd and 1.

21:24 | After finding Marvin Jones for another big gain, Stafford reaches Boldin for another first down! The NFC North is on the line here...

21:22 | Stafford under heavy pressure, with a defensive holding penalty that is turned down, finds Boldin for a huge gain! They are still in this game.

21:21 | And Theo Riddick rushes for seven yards to give the Lions a first down.

21:20 | Matt Stafford with a pass to Golden Tate for seven yards from his own endzone.

21:17 | The Vikings turn to punt. Can they draw this game level?

21:14 | Vikings with a first down on as their full-back sneaks over the line. Lions need a stop here!

21:08 | Lions punt!

21:05 | Lions trying to level the score as Theo Riddick rushes for a couple.

20:59 | Field goal Minnesota! the Vikings take the lead and it is now 13-10 in the fourth quarter.

20:38 | Field goal for the Vikings levels the game up 10-10 with seven minutes to play in the third.

20:24 | Peep! We're back on the field and Detroit get their D going.

20:18 | As we wait for the second half to get underway here's a heart-warming story for you to pass the time as rival make great gesture.

20:04 | Half-time: Vikings 7-10 Lions

19:55 | The Lions challenge on 4th and one carry fails and Minnesota have first down. Like the man who had done it all, they have no challenges left!

19:38 | A field goal attempt here for the home side and... the Lions roar! 7-10 Detroit lead!

19:09 | TOUCHDOWN FOR THE VIKINGS! Just before the Lions thought they'd turned it over and run it back to the Vikings 20 yard line, but the officials chalked the play off for an infringement in wrestling the ball away. The Vikings took full advantage of their restored possession and run in the touchdown. And they pop the conversion over. So 7-7! 

18:50 | TOUCHDOWN! Detroit on the board first with an impressive first spell of possession. And the conversion is good! Vikings 0-7 Lions

18:44 | Play underway between the Vikings and the Lions.

18:36 | Here we go! One fairly famous anthem to get proceedings underway...

O say can you see, by the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

The incredible Aretha Franklin did the honours there for what was certainly a different version of the anthem, though maybe not to everyone's tastes. What everyone will agree on though was that it was long. Very long. As @BlaiseinKC tweeted: "I cooked my whole turkey, ate and did the dishes during Aretha Franklin's National Anthem performance"

16:40 | Some stats to sum up the Cowboys 9-1 season so far. They slipped up in their season opener against the Giants, but since then have recorded nine straight wins - a franchise record. They've gone eight consecutive matches with at least 400 yards of net offense, tying an NFL record. And quarterback Dak Prescott has thrown 300+ yards and multiple touchdowns with no interceptions in two consecutive games - the first time an NFL rookie has done so.

BUT despite all the above, some say the Cowboys are not all that.

15:28 | Here's a question for you: why do the Dallas Cowboys and the Detroit Lions traditionally host the Thanksgiving games? And here's the comprehensive answer, courtesy of Frank Schwab over at Yahoo Sports

15:20 | Afternoon all, and happy Thanksgiving to you wherever you are. We've just finished our turkey sandwiches (no feast for us, stuck here as we are in the newsroom) and are beginning to get excited about what's in store. Because today is all about the three f's: food, family... and football. Lots of football.

First up, at 12:30 ET (18:30 CET), Minnesota Vikings head to Detroit Lions, and while that's not our featured match we'll be keeping an eye on proceedings as the sides vie to be top dogs in the NFC North.

And at 16:30 ET (22:30 CET) Robbie will be here live, covering the Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys. Check out his preview below. The day ends, lounging on the sofa lazily digesting turkey, and watching Pittsburgh Steelers at Indianapolis Colts (20:30 ET / 02:30 CET).

 


Dallas Cowboys vs Washington Redskins: preview

Dallas Cowboys

Tony Romo's back injury in a preseason game against Seattle was supposed to put paid to the Dallas Cowboys season. With a head coach that has suffered his fair share of scrutiny and speculation over his job in Jason Garrett, a trigger-happy owner in Jerry Jones and a team of supposed under-achievers, it seemed that this was the case. That was until Dak Prescott arrived on the scene. 

The 6 2' Louisiana-born 23-year-old has not only exceeded expectations but he has forced a now healthy Romo out of a job. In a move that is rare in professional sports, Romo handed over his starting job to the young gun, saying “Dak Prescott, and what he’s done, he’s earned the right to be our quarterback. As hard as that is for me to say, he’s earned that right. He’s guided our team to an 8-1 record, and that’s hard to do.”

Not to suggest that the Cowboys 9-1 start is down solely to Prescott; he is being very capably helped by Ezekiel Elliott's 1102 yards rushing. The 2016 first round draft pick is proving to be more than just hype. He has also rushed for eight 20+ yard efforts, 64 first downs and nine touchdowns in his first season in the league.

Washington Redskins

Washington, another also-ran, have been helped by the emergence of a signal-caller that many believed was not up to the task of leading an NFL team to the promised land that is the Super Bowl, which just happens to be in Texas (Houston) this year. But Kirk Cousins has put doubts to bed with 3,091 passing yards, which is good enough for third-place in NFL's leading passers.

If that isn't enough to convince you, how about a hearty endorsement from the legendary Brett Favre"Those conditions were more Green Bay-like. Trust me, it's not easy. It's not easy throwing into the wind. It's not easy throwing with the wind. The throw that Kirk Cousins made to Garcon in the second half, the long touchdown into the wind, and it dropped right in the basket? I mean, it was an outstanding throw. I thought, 'OK, he's arrived," the three-time NFL MVP said.

The race for the East

It might be a stretch to suggest that the Redskins are closing in on the Cowboys when you consider the hosts' nine-game winning streak but a win over their rivals on Thanksgiving blows the entire division open. 

The Cowboys have been beaten for the last two years in their annual Thanksgiving tie. Last season they were beaten by the Carolina Panther 33-14 and the year before by the Philadelphia Eagles 33-10. They come into Thursday's game with ambitions of a Super Bowl, two potential MVPs and plenty of momentum. 

Washington, on the other hand, are steadily building their own Super Bowl credentials with a victory over Green Bay and Minnesota in their last two games. They also have a quarterback with his own ambition and this Thanksgiving clash trusts to be an epic encounter.

Dallas Cowboys vs Washington Redskins live coverage