ARLINGTON, Texas – Jason Witten has never been a touchdown-spike kind of guy.
He made an exception Sunday.
The veteran tight end's 19-yard touchdown in the first quarter against the Los Angeles Rams – an acrobatic one-handed catch and spin into the end zone – warranted an exclamation point for a team trying to shake out of a three-game losing funk.
"I think that's my first touchdown spike in 16 years," Witten said after the Cowboys' 44-21 home victory over the Rams to improve to 7-7 on the season. "I've never been one to do that. I'll have to call and apologize to my granddad. He probably won't be very pleased.
"I just felt like we needed a spark. It's been a long three weeks, you know. You play three games in 11 days and you come up short on all three of them, you want to get it going."
Witten's touchdown indeed gave the offense a dose of momentum. They scored points on five straight drives and eight of their next nine possessions. Their 44 points Sunday were the most by a
Cowboys team since reaching the same total against Washington in 2014.
Back this season from a one-year retirement, the 37-year-old Witten has accepted fewer snaps this year than he has been accustomed to throughout his 16 seasons in Dallas. He has remained a reliable option for quarterback Dak Prescott, however, as his touchdown catch showed.
"It was a great play," Prescott said. "Not necessarily a great ball by me, but the defender undercut it. Jason did a great job of hauling it in and then getting in the end zone. He did what Jason Witten does."
Witten led the offense with four catches for 36 yards on a relatively quiet day for the Cowboys' receivers. The Dallas running game dominated with 248 rushing yards and three touchdowns from Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard.
"We felt like we were able to control the game a lot more with our running attack," Witten said. "I thought the line blocked great, Zeke and then Tony coming in with a change of pace. A lot to build on from that."