1. LT on the Big-Screen
The Cowboys were in control midway through the second quarter. Leading 10-0 and keeping Mark Sanchez and the Jets out of sync, things were looking good for Rob Ryan's new defense. After a third-down conversion to tight end Dustin Keller with 58 seconds to play until halftime, Sanchez caught the Cowboys on a blitz, and tossed a screen to LaDainian Tomlinson, who scampered 32 yards to the Cowboys' 4. That set up a TD pass from Sanchez to Keller, and just like that it was 10-7 going into the locker room.
2. Witten Stopped Short
After the game, Jason Witten wasn't talking about his new contract extension or a controversial pick play at the end, but rather his 64-yard reception in the early fourth quarter where he was stopped at the Jets' 3-yard line.
The Cowboys had a 24-17 lead and seemingly had answered the Jets' previous touchdown to slice into what was once a 14-point lead. Witten caught a perfectly-thrown pass from Romo and was off to the races, only to be brought down by Jets safety Jim Leonhard. Afterwards, Witten was talking about possibly cutting back inside near the 5, or twisting his body around where his momentum might have just carried him into the end zone. Instead, the Cowboys never scored a point, and the drive ended on Tony Romo's lost fumble inside the 5.
3. Short Loss By Felix
This play might very well be the most unnoticed on the list. The Cowboys led 24-17 and had just forced a huge turnover on Danny McCray's sack and fumble. But the Cowboys took over with 6:08 to play at the Jets' 47 and ended up having arguably their worst drive of the night. It started with a two-yard loss by Felix Jones on the left side. That play changed the course of the drive. Now, it's 2nd-and-12 the Cowboys can't run as much clock as needed. An incomplete pass to Austin, then a delay-of-game penalty followed by a false start, and now it's 3rd-and-22. Another bomb that went incomplete and it's time to punt. We all know what happened next, and just like that the Cowboys went from a fumble recovery in Jets' territory to a fourth-and-forever that led to the blocked punt and tie game.
4. Ball's Missed INT
The performance Alan Ball turned in Sunday night was definitely commendable. The converted safety, forced into heavy minutes with Orlando Scandrick and Mike Jenkins banged up, had a solid game from the cornerback spot.
But after Darrelle Revis' interception of Tony Romo in the final minute, Ball had a chance to return the favor on Mark Sanchez, who leisurely tossed a pass to the right flat for veteran Derrick Mason. Ball jumped the route and had a shot to pick off the pass but lost his footing for a moment. He stumbled as the ball hit him square in the hands and face. Two plays later, Nick Folk drilled a game-winning field goal.
5. Witten's Pick
It might have seemed like a long shot to get into field goal range following Folk's go-ahead score, but a 22-yard pass to Miles Austin put the ball at the Cowboys' 42 with 19 seconds left and a timeout. But that play was wiped out by Witten's offensive pass interference call for an illegal pick. Officials said Witten intentionally rubbed the defender covering Austin to free him up over the middle. Witten was irate after the game and even followed three officials off the field of play to reiterate his stance.
But had that play held up, the Cowboys would've only needed about 20 yards for a long field goal attempt by David Buehler, and had a timeout to use. That call turned it into first-and-20 at their own 10, too much for the Cowboys to overcome, capping off an improbable loss to the Jets.