Cowboys vs. Browns in ReviewBy Ashley Powell
Sunday’s matchup between the Dallas Cowboys and Cleveland Browns turned out to be of all things, a cliffhanger. The Cowboys were expected to jack 2-7 Cleveland at home like a common thief, but that certainly wasn’t the case. The game lasted nearly four hours and left fans on both sides irritated and frustrated with the final outcome.
Dallas eventually won the game in overtime 23-20 with a 38-yard field goal by kicker Dan Bailey.
Despite what the scoreboard read one could make the argument that the Cowboys were outplayed, especially in the first half. Cleveland blew a double-digit lead and victims of costly and questionable penalties with 12. Regular refs, replacement refs, it’s all the same.
The Browns’ defense was relentless, staying after Dallas quarterback Tony Romo like a prom date. The defense recorded a season-high seven sacks, which is its highest output since totaling eight against Pittsburgh on December 10, 2009.
Defensive linemen Juqua Parker, Jabaal Sheard, Ahtyba Rubin, Frostee Rucker and rookie John Hughes accounted for five of the sacks.
Rucker had a key play in the game, sacking and stripping Romo of the football. However, Cleveland failed to capitalize on the timely turnover.
When asked about the devastating loss, Rucker was stunned by the outcome.
“I’m speechless,” he told BigCProFootball.com after the game. “A lot of questionable calls in the game. Incredible! Really, I don’t know what to say.”
Kudos to rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden engineering the offense for two scores. Weeden was efficient completing 20- of-35 passes with two touchdowns, no interceptions and a 93.8 rating. He has recorded a quarterbacking rating of 90.0 or better in four of his 10 career starts.
At now 2-8, the Browns had an opportunity to shove this one down the throat of the Cowboys, but couldn’t seal the deal.
Dallas, on the other hand, doesn’t have much to cheer about with an embarrassing performance on its home turf. At some point, Romo is going to have to start proving he belongs among the elite quarterbacks in the league. Right now, it’s all glitz and glamour.
When the game was on the line and in Romo’s hand, he failed to put Cleveland away. Granted, his 28-yard touchdown pass to receiver Dez Bryant put the ‘Boys up 17-13 with 6:54 left in the fourth quarter. But on the next offensive drive, Romo tried to avoid the rush and Rucker came up big with the sack and forced fumble.
"I obviously need to hold onto the ball and not let the guy come from behind and let the ball come out," Romo said in his postgame interview. "That could have been a big one."
No kidding. The nonchalant comment makes one wonder if Romo is the answer at quarterback for the Cowboys. The team’s 5-5 record and the quarterback’s 13 interceptions on the season speaks for itself.
For Dallas, where’s the D with only two sacks on a Weeden, who was sacked six times in the last two games prior. Not to mention Weeden’s 12 interceptions coming into the game, but not against the Cowboys.
Bottom line: The team that lost should have, but the team that won didn’t reflect what America's Team should represent considering the poor performances.