The Dallas Cowboys showed the world they are the team to beat this season as they mauled the Detroit Lions 42-21, keeping the Lions from clinching a playoff spot. Dez Bryant put on one helluva show, as he threw his first career touchdown pass between a pair of scoring catches, while Ezekiel Elliott ran for two TDs.
Bryant’s passing TD came late in the third quarter, when Bryant took a reverse pitch from Dak Prescott and tucked the ball as if planning to run before pulling up and tossing a lob to Jason Witten for an easy 10-yard score and a 35-21 lead.
Elliott, the NFL rushing leader, had a 55-yard touchdown run in the first half and finished with 80 yards on 12 carries. He has 15 touchdowns rushing, two behind league-leading LeGarrette Blount of the New England Patriots. The first-year sensation, who is 177 yards shy of Eric Dickerson’s 33-year-old rookie rushing record of 1,808 yards, was almost upstaged by Detroit’s Zach Zenner. The undrafted back in his second year out of South Dakota State, filling in with Theo Riddick sidelined for a third straight game with a wrist injury, had a career-high 64 yards and two touchdowns at halftime. But Zenner faded in the second half, finishing with 67 yards.
Detroit QB Matthew Stafford had a one-yard scoring plunge , but was sacked four times. He was 26 of 46 for 260 yards, including an interception that set up Elliott’s one-yard touchdown early in the third quarter to break a 21-21 halftime tie.
Prescott tied Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger (2004) for the most wins by a rookie quarterback in the Super Bowl era with 13. He was 15 of 20 for 212 yards with three touchdowns, including Bryant’s juggling 25-yard grab in the end zone when he fought off pass interference by Johnson Bademosi.
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