ARLINGTON, Texas – The Cowboys were able to flip the script on this game, and maybe the season with a huge 20-17 win over the Bengals.
We know about the final field goals, the touchdown catches and the big runs and sacks. But all games have the plays that can easily be forgotten.
Here are five hidden plays that changed the outcome of this game.
Fourth-down pass to Brown – On the Cowboys' opening drive, the crowd seemed shocked when they went for it on fourth-and-2 from their own 44. But Cooper Rush fired a pass behind Noah Brown, who made a great catch for a 17-yard gain to extend the drive. Brown then caught his first career touchdown pass to give the Cowboys an early lead. But without the fourth-down conversion, the Bengals take over in prime field position.
Armstrong's sack leads to more points – With the Cowboys leading 14-3 late in the second quarter, Dorance Armstrong sacked Joe Burrow for an 11-yard loss back to the Bengals 19. That likely led Cincy to change its punt strategy and boom the ball deep to KaVontae Turpin, who finally broke open a big return, netting 20 yards to set up a field goal. But the sack by Armstrong, moving the line of scrimmage from the 30 to the 19, was a big reason for the score.
Defense stiffens to force field goal – In reality, the defense should've been off the field to start the third quarter. After a stop, the special teams had costly offside call that put the defense back out there. The Bengals drove to the Cowboys' 34 for a first down, but got two more yards after players such as Dante Fowler, Quinton Bohanna and Anthony Brown all had big plays that led to a 50-yard field goal, cutting the lead to 17-6.
Rush responds after tie game – The Bengals just rallied from 14 points down at halftime to tie the game after an exhausting 19-play drive. So how do the Cowboys respond? Cooper Rush hit CeeDee Lamb for 24 yards to the Dallas 49. Now the Cowboys couldn't extend the drive and ultimately had to punt, but that play shifted the momentum and the field position in one play.
Anger's Punt pins Bengals back - As big as Trevon Diggs' tackle was on third-down, let's not forget why they were back there and playing conservative. Bryan Anger's 47-yard, angled punt put the Bengals back on the 8 with 2:14 to play. Cincy's approach wasn't as aggressive as we saw the previous two drives, leading to a punt and the Cowboys ultimately won the game.