Who do you blame for the Cowboys' loss to Green Bay?
ARLINGTON — The Cowboys lost to the Green Bay Packers 37-36 on Sunday in a game where Dallas allowed the Packers to match their biggest comeback in franchise history.
The Cowboys could only watch as their 26-3 halftime lead evaporated in the final minutes of the game.
"It's a disappointing loss, there is no question about that," Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett said.
"I think if you play long enough, you have plenty of big wins and tough losses," Dallas quarterback Tony Romo added. "This is obviously a tough one."
The Cowboys had a five-point lead starting the final 4:17 of the game, but two interceptions thrown by Romo cost Dallas the game.
The first pick came with 2:58 left in the contest as Romo tried to get the ball to wide receiver Miles Austin.
"The idea was to run the ball and make them use the clock; run it and if we throw it, throw high percentage passes, keep the clock going, and make them use their time outs," Garrett explained.
Instead, Romo chose to change the play.
"It's a run call that we have," Romo said. "We'll have it up three to five or six times a game. That specific time, obviously when I look back now, you should run the ball, because you throw an interception. You should never give them a chance to have the ball."
"It's something we have accompanying some runs if he gets a bad look; that's what happened on the interception," Garrett said. "It was run call, though, that he threw the ball on."
Dallas ran the ball only seven times in the second half, but the first interception led to the game-winning touchdown.
"They overloaded the side we were going to run the ball to, and I ended up throwing to the man that was one-on-one," Romo said. "The defense did a real good job of coming in. It's my fault for obviously putting the ball in position where the defense could make a play."
The Packers drove 50 yards on seven plays after the interception to take a 37-36 lead. When the Cowboys got the ball back with a chance to take the lead back, there was 1:31 left in the game.
The Cowboys were able to run only two plays.
The first was a pass to Cole Beasley that gained nine yards.
The second was an another pass to Beasley, which Packers cornerback Tramon Williams intercepted to ice the game with 1:24.
"There was a miscommunication just how he was going to run that route," Garrett said. "I think he and Tony just weren't on the same page and how they played the defense. He ran up and ran out, and Tony was a little out in front of him with the ball."
"Yeah, he ended up cutting his route off, and I threw it as if was continuing to go to sideline," Romo said. "We'll get that right. We'll go back and access the whole process and get it right."
Romo's two interceptions were separated by only 1:34.
"The clock management by the Cowboys is worst that I've seen," Fox analyst and former Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman said during the national broadcast.
The Packers scored a touchdown on all five of their possessions in the second half, with drives of 80, 80, 22, 80 and 50 yards.
The loss hit an emotional Dez Bryant hard. The Cowboys; wide receiver left the field at AT&T Stadium with 1:04 still left on the clock.
Bryant tweeted after the game saying: "I walked back to the locker room because I was emotional. It had nothing to do with my teammates. We had it. We fought and didn't finish."
At 7-7, the loss leaves the Cowboys in the same position they were in when the day started. They still trail the 8-6 Eagles by one game. 6. Philadelphia lost as well, which means the Cowboys can still make the playoffs — if they win their final two games of the season.
Dallas will be in Washington next week and close out the regular season against the Eagles at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on December 29.