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Don't Forget About These 5 Plays

    • Gurode's Tripping Penalty
      Is there any doubt the NFL is making a blatant attempt to crack down on tripping penalties this season. Not sure if it's getting called in the other games as much, but clearly the Cowboys have been affected. Andre Gurode's tripping penalty early in the second quarter put the Cowboys in a first-and-20 hole, forcing them to pass. Two plays later, Romo was sacked by a backside blitz, fumbling the ball away to the Broncos, who scored just one play later. Without Gurode's penalty, the Cowboys likely keep running the ball and moving the chains. * Romo's Pick and Previous Incompletion
      The Broncos handed the Cowboys a Christmas present on the first play of the third quarter and the Cowboys gave it right back. After Denver lost a fumble, the Cowboys couldn't capitalize despite a first down on the Broncos' 27. On second-and-11 from the Denver 17, Romo forced a pass to Roy Williams, who couldn't come up with a one-handed grab. But had he waited a half-second, Jason Witten was about to be wide open in the middle of the field. The Cowboys come back on third down and Romo and Miles Austin weren't on the same page. Romo fires a pass to the sideline while Austin stopped his route. The ball landed in Champ Bailey's hands and instead of taking at least a six-point lead, they get nothing. * Spencer's Face Mask
      It's all about field position. The Cowboys' defense was about to force a third-and-11 at the Broncos' 21 until Spencer received a personal foul penalty for grabbing Kyle Orton's face mask on a tackle for no gain. The Broncos eventually punted from their 45, making the Cowboys start from their 20. But without that penalty, the Cowboys had a great chance to start the next possession close to midfield, if not their own 40. * Holding On Marty B
      Whether or not it seemed questionable - and after the game Bennett claimed, "It was not holding at all," - the tight end's 10-yard setback wiped out a big run by Tashard Choice. The 17-yard run around the right end would've given the Cowboys the ball at the Denver 44. The Cowboys not only needed the field position, but a little confidence in the running game. * Crayton's Short Pass
      There are so many plays to choose from in that final drive. But after Romo somehow found Sam Hurd for a 53-yard gain to momentarily save the game, the Cowboys had the ball on the eight with 27 seconds to play. Without a timeout, Romo found Crayton over the middle for six yards, but they couldn't stop the clock, forcing him to spike the ball with nine seconds. So for 18 seconds, the Cowboys got just six yards. And there are many people who think it's tougher to score from the two than from the eight. Also, having to spike the ball took a down away. So while you can't fault the Cowboys for trying to make a safe play with the possibility of scoring, it did put them in a hole of which they just couldn't quite get out.
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