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Elliott, Prescott lead Cowboys to 35-30 win over Steelers

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Ezekiel Elliott ran for 114 yards and two touchdowns, both in the final two minutes, and had an 83-yard catch-and-run for a score as the Cowboys pulled off a thrilling 35-30 victory on Sunday night for their eighth straight win.

The Steelers were 42 seconds away from beating the Dallas Cowboys at Heinz Field Sunday. They scored what looked like a come-from-behind, game-winning touchdown in the final minute. However, the defense could not stop the Cowboys in responding and gave up a five-play touchdown drive, helped by a facemask penalty, as Dallas pulled out a 35-30 win from the jaws of defeat in front of a Steeler-record 67,737 fans.

“The Cowboys made the critical plays and we didn’t, so we have to take responsibility for that,” Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin said. “It’s not mystical.”

PLAYER OF THE GAME
Ben Roethlisberger looked like a different player this week after not looking healthy last week in the loss to the Baltimore Ravens. He completed 37 passes on 46 attempts for 408 yards and three touchdowns and no interceptions.

“We are undisciplined,” Roethlisberger said. “[Dallas] is one of the best in the business and we’re not right now.”

PLAY OF THE GAME
No touchdown was more important than the 15-yard strike to Antonio Brown in the final minute. The Cowboys had just scored a touchdown to take a 29-24 lead. The Steelers took over and Roethlisberger responded by leading a 75-yard touchdown drive. He faked a spike and found Brown racing down the right sideline. The defense was caught off guard. Brown credited Roethlisberger after the game for calling the play.

“Ben [Roethlisberger] made a great call. We knew [Dallas] was expecting us to spike the ball. Ben shot me a signal and we were able to execute the play,” Brown said. “We practiced that situation and I was just ready.”

It should have been enough to win, but the Steelers’ defense was victimized the entire game, so it was fitting the defense gave up the game-winning drive in the final minute. The Cowboys had already driven Steelers Ben Roethlisberger43 yards to field goal range to the Steelers’ 32-yard line in four plays. The drive was helped by a facemask call on Sean Davis.

“The [Cowboys] made the splash plays. We didn’t make enough of them,” Tomlin said. “That affected the game.”

On first and ten, Dallas called a draw play and Ezekiel Elliot burst threw the middle and sprinted 32 yards untouched into the endzone to give the Cowboys a 35-30 lead with 15 seconds left in the game.

The Steelers started the game on the right foot. Anthony Chickillo sacked Dak Prescott and forced a fumble on the first possession of the game. Ryan Shazier recovered and the Steelers had the ball on the Dallas 38 yard line to start the game. They took advantage of the short field by mounting an eight-play, 38 yard touchdown drive capped by Ben Roethlisberger hitting Le’Veon Bell for a two-yard scoring strike to take a 6-0 lead (two point conversion was no good).

The Cowboys responded with a Dan Bailey 37 yard field goal with five minutes left in the first quarter to cut Pittsburgh’s lead in half at 6-3.

However, the Steelers kept up the momentum and took a 12-3 lead with 1:13 left in the first quarter after Roethlisberger hit Eli Rogers on a three-yard touchdown pass. They tried another two point conversion, which failed and the Steelers led 12-3 late in the first quarter.

It was all Pittsburgh up to that point, but Dallas turned the tide with one strike. Prescott hit Ezekial Elliott in the flat on a screen pass at the Cowboy 17 yard line and Elliott streaked down the field untouched for an 83-yard touchdown play to pull back into the game, down 12-10 with 12 seconds left in the first quarter.

On the ensuing possession, the Steelers failed to convert a third-and-one and were forced to punt. The Cowboys took over at the Steelers 40 yard line and drove close enough to try a 53-yard field goal. Bailey drained it to give the Cowboys a 13-12 lead in the first minute of the second quarter.

The Steelers re-took the lead, 15-13 after a Chris Boswell 39-yard field goal with less than five minutes left in the first half. He also tried a 55 yard field goal as time ran out in the first half, but it was wide right to keep the Steelers lead to 15-13 at the half.

The Steelers had the ball five minutes more in the first half, and they outplayed the Cowboys through most of the first half except they gave up the 83 yard screen pass for a touchdown.

Roethlisberger hit Cobi Hamilton on first play of the second half to the Dallas 36 yard line (39 yard gain).

He threw long to Hamilton again two plays later, and drew a pass interference penalty at the Cowboys 7 yard line. Roethlisberger took three tries for the end zone, but could not connect. The Steelers had to settle for a Boswell 25-yard field goal and took an 18-13 lead less than two minutes into the second half.

Dallas responded ten unanswered points in the third quarter to take their biggest lead of the game. Bailey booted a 46-yard Bailey field goal to pull back to within two points at 18-16 with 5:35 left in the third quarter.
Steelers Cowboys Roethlisberger Prescott
Four minutes later, Prescott hit Bryant for a 50- yard touchdown with 1:35 left in the third quarter to give the Cowboys a 23-18 lead. Bryant was two steps behind cornerback Artie Burns as he streaked down the left sideline.

The back and forth battle continued as the Steelers held the Cowboys on third and one from their 20 yard line at 11:19 mark of fourth quarter to force a punt. The Steelers took over near midfield and took advantage of the short field.

Le’Veon Bell capped a six-play, 46 yard drive with a one yard touchdown to give the Steelers a 24-23 lead early in the fourth quarter. The Cowboys scored two touchdowns, including the game-winner in the final minute, which was enough to seal the win.

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