Trent Murphy and the Washington Redskins came up just short in Dallas on Thanksgiving, falling to their NFC East rival Cowboys, 31-26.
No. 93 logged two tackles in a thrilling back-and-forth contest, but the red-hot Cowboys prevailed on their home field on Thanksgiving.
“That’s the difference between winning and losing in the NFL,” said defensive tackle Chris Baker. “One play here, one play there—we’ve just got to find a way to make those plays.”
Dallas opened up a 7-0 lead on their its possession as rookie running back Ezekiel Elliot rushed into the Washington end zone from four yards out to cap a 75-yard drive. Washington missed a 50-yard FG attempt on the following drive, but Trent and Co. held strong, forcing a Dallas punt. That helped to set up an easier try for kicker Dustin Hopkins, and he tacked on three points from 24 yards out.
Trent and the Skins threw a lot the way of rookie quarterback Dak Prescott and the vaunted Dallas offensive line but totaled just one sack. They kept Prescott under 200 yards passing, but they just couldn’t force the young signal-caller into any bad decisions, as the Cowboys took a 17-6 lead into the half.
The Washington offense got hot in the second half, reeling off touchdowns on each of their final three possessions. Quarterback Kirk Cousins had a career day, passing for 449 yards and three touchdowns with zero interceptions. It was enough to bring the Redskins to within five points three times in the fourth quarter, but each time, the Cowboys calmly responded with scoring drives of their own.
“There’s a few plays here or there that we can make that are there to be made, and when you don’t make them against a good football team, it ends up biting you,” Cousins said. “We were close, but we just weren’t good enough.”
Washington struggled in the red zone, allowing four Dallas touchdowns and scoring on just one of their four trips inside the 20-yard line. Afterward, head coach Jay Gruden spoke about the toughness displayed by Trent and Co. after their fourth straight
“We stuck together. Had some adversity, we came fighting through it. We just didn’t make enough plays when it’s all said and done and they did,” said Gruden. “We had three games in eleven days. These are physical football games… this is a physical game. These guys are worn out a little bit, so these three days off will do them some good.”
Washington is primed for a run at the NFC Wild Card, currently sitting in the second spot at 6-4-1 beneath another NFC foe in the New York Giants—whom the Redskins will play again in the final week of the season.
Washington will enjoy 10 days until their next contest in Arizona against the Cardinals. That game will kick off next Sunday at 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX.