Houston Texans 23-27 Dallas Cowboys, Cowboys barely beat Texans, summary: score, stats, highlights | NFL Week 14
Dallas Cowboys beat Houston Texans
Cowboys squeak out win over Texans
Are you surprised that it was a struggle for the Cowboys to beat the losing Texans? You really shouldn't be. It's what they do - beat the teams they should lose to, and lose to the teams they should beat. They have been doing it for years. Why? It's one of life's great mysteries. Not always, of course, but I don't feel shocked and there is a reason for that.
Cowboys' sloppy offense
A win is a win, sure. But the Texans came into this game with one single win in 12 games. The Cowboys, on the other hand, who are a better team in every single aspect, struggled to get past the Texans defense and made all kinds of mistakes on offense. This game was by far the Cowboys' worst this season.
Prescott looked sloppy and tired. He threw two interceptions and was sacked once and in general just missed passes to wide open receivers several times. The defense was slightly better, but not up to their usual standard either. They got no pressure and seemed to be confused by the Texans constantly switching out their quarterbacks.
I said before the game that the Cowboys would be thinking of this as an easy win and that it would be close at halftime. It was - the Texans were winning 20-17. But what I was wrong about was that the Cowboys would get their act together in the second half. They did, but not until the last minute (literally).
Despite Prescott's mediocre game, he ended up being the reason they won. He led them down the field on an 11-play, 98-yard touchdown drive with less than one minute to play.
The Cowboys move on to 10-3. They will face the Jacksonville Jaguars next week (the only team the Texans have managed to beat).
Texans miss opportunity for an upset
The Texans very nearly did get their upset against the Cowboys. On a fourth-down goal line stand, quarterback Jeff Driskel was stopped. If not for that, the Texans likely would have won this game.
They utilized a dual quarterback attack, switching Driskel with Kyle Allen on a basis I could barely keep up with while commentating on this game.
The Texans defense forced the Cowboys into three turnovers (nearly four). Those turnovers had them starting at the Dallas 27, 24, and 4-yard line (though the Cowboys managed to stop them at the 4).
It was a good effort, but next week against the Chiefs won't be so smooth.
Game over, Cowboys win
Prescott takes the knee.
Mills desperately throws into the endzone and Mukuamu INTERCEPTS it to ruin the Texans' chances of a win.
And Houston gets a SECOND FalseStart penalty
Mills SACKED by Odighizuwa and Houston get FalseStart call
The Texans have 35 seconds to score a touchdown and Mills gets a long pass to Moore and spikes the ball to stop the clock with 14 seconds left.
Elliott runs it in 2 yards and the Maher extra point is good. The Cowboys manage to get the lead with 41 seconds left in the game.
Elliott opted to fake the jump into the Salvation Army kettle this time.
Ruling on the field stands, incomplete pass. 3rd and goal.
Gallup had the ball in the end zone, but it's knocked out as his feet are coming down.
Ruling on the field is an incomplete pass, but the play is under review.
Texans take final timeout
Cowboys at 1st and goal, Elliott takes it up 2 yards. 2nd and goal to the Texans 2 just short of the end zone.
Houston takes second timeout
Yet another deep pass to Schultz is CAUGHT for a gain of 18 to the Texans 4.
Cowboys take first timeout
Prescott takes it up for the 1st down and then tosses a deep pass to Brown for 18yards to the Texans 22.
Prescott bullet pass to Lamb and he's slammed back to 3rd and 1
The Cowboys are desperately trying to get the ball down the field with two minutes left to play as they trail by 3 to the worst team in the league.
Elliott takes it up 6 yards to the Texans 49, 2nd and 3
Prescott gets it to Schultz for another big gain of 13 yards
Prescott scrambles for a gain of 9 yards, 2nd and 1
Prescott to Schultz for a gain of 21yards to the Cowboys 23
Driskel runs it up but he is stopped by Gallimore and Ball. No Texans score and Cowboys will get the ball back at the Dallas 2.
Texans call first timeout
It looked like Driskel's pass to Moore was caught in the end zone, but it was just short. Lucky for Dallas as they held them to 4th and goal. The Texans are going for it...
Texans at 1st and goal
No sooner had I written one near-turnover by the Cowboys had Prescott thrown ANOTHER INTERCEPTION. Intended for Schultz, intercepted by Smith
Prescott is SACKED by Okoronkwo and FUMBLES the ball, which is just barely recovered by Cowboys' Ball at the 3.
Pollard gets 3 yards to get the 1st down
Prescott passes high to Lamb. He hops up and makes the catch and is slammed back in the air, 3rd and 1
Prescott makes the sneak, gets a yard, 2nd and 9
Texans punt it back, Moore downs it at the 1
Mills pass incomplete, deflected by Gallimore, 4th down
Mills to Burkhead for 4, 3rd and 5
Benjamin gets just 1 yard, 2nd and 9
Pierce comes back out, still favoring his ankle
Mills is in now at QB, Moore gets an 18-yard pickup to the Dallas 46
Pierce is back in the game, gets the 1st down with 2 yards
Driskel scrambles for 5 yards, 3rd down and 1
Driskel is in at QB, Benjamin takes it 4 yards
On the return, Texans got a Holding call
Holding call on Dallas' rookie Smith and an incomplete pass bring Cowboys to 4th and 4
Elliott gets 5, then 1. They're going to need more of an effort than this if the Cowboys want to get anywhere.
Mills pass incomplete to Moore, broken up by Joseph, 4th down
Pierce was injured during the play. His return is Questionable. He' on the sidelines with pain in the left ankle. That's not great news for the Texans as he's the one player making the biggest difference in this game.
Pierce gets a yard, brings Texans to 3rd and 8
Mills in at QB, he scrambles for a couple yards
The Cowboys STILL can't manage to get into the end zone. More sloppy passes force them to try for a field goal instead. Maher makes the 53-yard attempt to put the Cowboys within 3 points to start the 3rd quarter.
Maher 53-yard field goal is GOOD!
Prescott's pass is deflected by Kirksey, 4th down. They'll attempt a field goal.
END 3rd quarter
A 5-yard gain by Schultz is negated by a Pollard loss for 2. Cowboys have the ball at 3rd and 7 at the Texans 35.
Prescott passes, Gallup picks up 24 yards at the Texans 38
They go for it and Pollard gets the 1st down on the huddle
Pollard gets a pickup of 6, Prescott pass incomplete, and then a scramble puts Cowboys at 4th and 1 at the Dallas 38
Yep, you read that right, folks. The 9-3 Cowboys are losing to the 1-1-10 Texans at home.
A series of mistakes by the Cowboys offense is making it impossible for them to take the lead, let alone keep it. A 54-yard field goal by Fairbairn gives the Texans a 6-point lead with 3:03 left in the 3rd quarter.
Fairbairn 54-yard field goal is GOOD!
Mills in for the 3rd down attempt, he passes to Moore who's having a great day and he makes it but just for a gain of 6. That's enough to put them in field goal range though...
Driskel scrambles for 5 yards, 3rd and 9
Benjamin gets the ball but he's swallowed up by Bohana for a loss of 4, 2nd and 14
Pierce gets a pickup of 4 and Driskel throws an incomplete pass to Akins to bring Texans to 3rd and 6. Rodgers is the hero again with a 14-yard pickup on a pass from Driskel to the Cowboys 42.
Pierce finds the ball and breaks through for a gain of 24yards to the Texans 40
Driskel in at QB, he gets the 1st down on a 10-yard scramble
The Cowboys go for it and they don't get it, Elliott is pushed back 2 yards. Texans get the ball back at their own 1-yard line.
Elliott reaches his arm out but he's down too quick and it's still short, 4th and goal
At 2nd and goal, Elliott takes it up 4 yards, short of the end zone. 3rd and goal at the 3.
At 3rd and 1, Pollard takes it up just enough for the 1st down, 1st and goal
Elliott ate his Wheaties this morning!
Elliott gets a gain of 5, 5, 13, then 9! Takes them to the Texans 12
Pierce FUMBLES the ball and Cowboys Diggs recovers it off a bounce on the ground. He goes running in circles, backwards, forwards, and finally enough for a gain of 15 to the Texans 28.
And we're back
Driskel in for the Texans to start the second half. Just for a minute though. At 3rd and 6, they put in Mills and he makes the pass to Rodgers for a pickup of 8 yards and the 1st down.
What is going on with the Cowboys?
Well, besides just taking it easy, they are playing sloppy. Prescott has made sloppy passes, missing passes to open receivers and Dallas has turned the ball over several times. It's hard to stay ahead with mistakes like that.
That's how the Cowboys go from 17-point favorites to losing 20-17.
As I predicted, the Cowboys thought they could take it easy and are losing to a terrible team. We should be surprised, and yet, I am not. Let's see if I'm right that they get their act together in the 2nd half.
END FIRST HALF
The Cowboys allowed the Texans to get ahead just as the game ran into halftime on a 50-yard field goal by Fairbairn.
Fairbairn 50-yard field goal is GOOD!
Mills pas to Dorsett for 9 yards and the 1st down
Mills pass incomplete but a double penalty is called on Cowboys for PassInterference and Offsides so they get an automatic 1st down.
Texans take second timeout
They get another 1st down after Rodgers picks up 7yards
Mills in at QB now, passes 18 yardsto Moore for the first down
The Cowboys tie it up just before halftime on a 33-yard field goal by Maher. Prescott had several sloppy passes on their way to this scoring attempt which ended with them settling for a field goal with 40 seconds left in the half.
Maher 33-yard field goal is GOOD!
Prescott pass incomplete to Brown, pass is batted away by Pitre yet again, 4th and 10, they'll attempt a field goal
Cowboys take second timeout
Cowboys' Steele is down on the field
Prescott tosses a sloppy pass to Pollard, incomplete, 3rd and 10
Prescott passed to Schultz in the end zone and he caught it but dropped it in the end zone, 2nd and 10
Washington made a nice catch that would have been a 1st down but he was bumped by Pitre and lost the ball. On the second try, Prescott threw a pass to Schultz who leapt up to catch it but missed. On the third attempt, Schultz got it that time and ran it up 15 yards to the Texans 15
Texans' King gets IllegalContact penalty, Cowboys at 1st and 10 at the Texans 37
Gallup picks up another 16 yards
Brown picks up 7 more, 2nd and 3
Prescott to Schultz for a pickup of 8 and the 1st down
The Cowboys are trailing the Texans with two minutes to go in the first half after Prescott threw an interception, leading to a Texans TD.
The Cowboys have the ball at their own 32 on 2nd and 3 after Lamb picked up 7 yards.
Sorry, I forgot to update you on who was in at QB here, but it was Driskel this time, who passed to Rodgers deep for 28yards to get the Texans another touchdown and the lead with 2:23 left in the first half. It was Rodgers' first career TD. The touchdown came after Prescott threw an interception.
Pierce gets 4 yards back to bring Texans to 2nd and 11
FalseStart on Texans' Green brings Texans to 1st and 15
Precott pass to Brown is INTERCEPTED by Texans' Smith. He brings it back 26 yards to the Dallas 27.
Turpin runs it 9 yards to the Dallas 36
Mills is in at QB now, and he throws two incomplete passes to bring them to 4th down and 8
Prescott gets rid of the ball to Pollard but it's not enough. He gets just 6 yards to bring Cowboys to 4th and 4.
Cowboys brought to 3rd and 10 after no gain by Elliott and an incomplete pass by Prescott under pressure
They go for it, but Pierce carries it 2 yards and is down justttttt short, Cowboys will get the ball back at their own 40.
Pierce gets another 7 yards on the first try, but is stopped twice in a row on the next attempts by Clark and Vander Esch respectively. 4th down and 2, will they go for it?
Driskel runs it up again for a gain of 7 yards and the 1st down.
Rodgers takes it up 3 yards, then Driskelscrambles for another 5 just short of the 1st down. 3rd and 2.
Driskel back in now at quarterback, I can barely keep up
Mills tosses it in the air and Moore hops up to snag it for a pickup of 4 and the 1st down.
Texans trading QBs
Mills is back in. Pierce picks up 2 and Akins picks up 5 to bring Texans to 3rd and 3.
Cowboys take the lead back on an impressive side-step run into the end zone by Pollard, 10 yards. The touchdown was set up by a 51-yard catch by Noah Brown. Cowboys lead to start out the 2nd quarter with 12:28 to go in the first half.
Pollard gets no gain to bring Cowboys to 2nd and goal but on his second try he sideways steps his way into the endzone like a crab.
False Start on Steele, 5-yard penalty brings Cowboys to 1st and goal at the 10
Cowboys in the red zone
Pollard takes it up another 18yards and the Cowboys are in the red zone at the Houston 5.
Prescott passes deep to Brown for a gain of 51yards to the Texans 26. A penalty for Holding was called on the Texans but was declined.
End of 1st quarter
The Cowboys end the 1st quarter losing to the Texans 10-7. They have the ball at 2nd and 12 after King pushed Pollard back for a loss of 2 yards.
The Cowboys hold the Texans to 4th and 8 but they manage to get a fieldgoal from 43 yards to put them ahead with seconds to go in the 1st quarter.
Fairbairn 43-yard field goal is GOOD!
Driskel is back in at QB now and Pierce gets a few yards before Odighizuwa rocks Ogunbowale for a loss of 3 to bring the Texans to 4th down.
The ruling on the field stands - Moore gets the pickup of 36 yards and Cowboys lose a timeout
Mills passes it to Moore and it looked like he snagged it on a huge pickup down the field but the play is under review. It's not clear if he had complete control before his knee hits the ground so Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy decides to challenge it.
Mills back in at QB for the Texans, he gets it to Dorsett for a pickup of 9 yards
Texans hold Cowboys to 3 and out, punt it back to Texans
Texans RB Dameon Pierce runs it into the end zone on a second 3rd down and goal opportunity. The Texans maximized on a fumble recovery opportunity that put them in great field position just after going 3 and out. They tie up the game with 5:33 to go in the 1st.
Pierce drives it up yet again to the Dallas 1 just short of the end zone and at 3rd and goal, Driskell faked it but didn't get it in. Cowboys got called for Offsides, so they'll redo the 3rd and goal.
The Texans put Driskell in at QB for this drive. They activated him ahead of the game. At 3rd down, he hands it off to Pierce and he runs it up to the Dallas 8 for 1st and goal.
Turpin fumbles the ball on the return and the TEXANSrecover it (Cashman) at the Cowboys 24.
Jayron Kearse on the field against Texans
Kearse is on the field after hurting his left leg in the warmups ahead of the game.
Cowboys defense held Texans to 3 and out. They'll punt it back.
Pollard runs it into the endzone 11 yards to give the Cowboys a touchdown on their first drive of the game and Maher makes the extra point. Cowboys take an early lead 11:20 still to go in the 1st quarter.
That's the Cowboys' 20th rushing TD of the season.
An incomplete pass to Prescott followed by a near break-free from Elliott brings Cowboys to another 3rd down and 3, but Elliott gets down the break through this time, finding the hole and making it all the way to the 12 for 25 yards!
Pollard runs it 11 yards to the Texans 45 for another Cowboys first down real quick
Pressure on Prescott caused a flop in a long pass to Gallup, but on 3rd and short, he tossed it to Lamb who took it 13yards for the 1st down and then some.
Texans won the toss and elected to return. Turpin takes it back 27 yards as Cowboys start us off on offense. Let's go!
Weather forecast for Cowboy vs Texans
The weather isn't too bad in Arlington, Texas today. As is usual for Texas "winters", temperatures are mild. It's currently 54 degrees Farenheit and highs are around 62 later on. It's mostly cloudy with winds between 5 and 10 miles per hour. It's humid as usual with humidity levels around 85%, but not expected to rain.
Jayron Kearse suffered injury in warmups
Cowboys safety Jayron Kearse left the field earlier during warmups with a left leg injury. Kearse is active for the game, but had to be assisted into the locker room after hurting his leg. If he ends up unable to play, it's likely Israel Mukuamu would take his place.
Texans QB woes
Houston declared quarterback Kyle Allen inactive for today's game against the Cowboys. Allen started the last two games while Davis Mills sat, but he was somehow an even bigger letdown thank Mills was.
Kyle Allen vs Davis Mills
Davis Mills has not been the answer the Texans are looking for at quarterback. He is under contract through 2024 though, so it seems they are riding it out with him and trying to utilize him as best as possible.
When Mills failed to perform up to standard, the Texans put in Allen to see what he could do, and it was not the answer either. The last two games Allen played, against the Dolphins and Browns, were both blowout losses. Allen turned the ball over five times with four interceptions and one lost fumble.
In 10 starts, Mills has completed 61.9% of passes for 2,144 yards with 11 touchdowns as well as 11 interceptions, tied for the second-most interceptions in the NFL. Neither Mills nor Allen is a great option for this struggling Houston team, but you have to go with the lesser of two bad options.
The only potential bright side for the Texans here is that they're fully on track to get the number one draft pick next year, which they're highly likely to use on a quarterback to be their new starter in 2023.
Texans vs Cowboys odds and predictions for NFL Week 14
Spread: Cowboys (-16)
Moneyline: Cowboys (-1400), Texans (+900)
Cowboys players fined for Salvation Army TD celebration, but the charity loves it
Last week, Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott and running back Ezekiel Elliott were fined for their touchdown celebration in which Zeke jumped into the big Salvation Army bucket behind the end zone.
After a four-yard TD run by Elliott, he jumped into the bucket while Prescott cranked an imaginary handle and Elliott popped out like a jack-in-the-box.
Prescott and Elliott were both fined $13,261 for unsportsmanlike conduct. This is the second time the NFL has fined Dallas players for using the Salvation Army bucket as a prop to celebrate touchdowns.
The week before during the Thanksgiving game against the Giants, the Cowboys' four tight ends, Dalton Schultz, Jake Ferguson, Peyton Hendershot and Sean McKeon jumped in the kettle and pretended to be a Whac-a-Mole. In total, the six Cowboys players were fined $53,616 for the celebrations.
Salvation Army says TD celebrations are great for them
The Salvation Army told TMZ Sports that there has been a spike in donations since the celebrations.
"After Ezekiel Elliott leaped in on Sunday night's game against the Indianapolis Colts, the number of donors to the Salvation Army that day doubled compared with the game last year," the Salvation Army said.
Can the Texans pull off an upset?
Well, I am personally going to go with no. Here is what I predict will happen: The Cowboys think they have an easy day off, they relax too much and let the Texans get too close for comfort in the first half. They get their act together in the second half and serve the beating we all expected from the beginning. Cowboys win by a landslide, Texans continue to be terrible.
Houston has only won one game all season over the Jaguars in Week 5. Besides that, they had a tie with the Colts in Week 1 and the rest of their games have been losses. Their offense is dead last in total yards and their defense leads the league in both carries allowed and rushing yards allowed.
I could also be wrong, but if I am, it's not because the Texans upset the Cowboys - it's because the Cowboys completely shut out the Texans. While the Texans' defense is 26th in defensive DVOA, the Cowboys' defense is first. And with both Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard running the show on offense, the Texans defense doesn't stand much of a chance. An upset here would take a miracle.
Good morning, everyone and welcome to our live coverage of the Houston Texans at Dallas Cowboys!
These two Texas teams aren't rivals, but who doesn't love a good Texas showdown? Houston will look to break a seven-game losing streak, but that won't be easy against the 9-3 Dallas Cowboys.
Follow along with all the latest updates, scores, highlights, and commentary before, during, and after the game. Kickoff is at 12 p.m. local time (1 p.m. ET) from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
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