PHILADELPHIA — The Dallas Cowboys got off to their first 2-0 start since 2008 with a 20-10 win over the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.
However, it came with a price as quarterback Tony Romo left the game with 9:54 in the third quarter with a fractured left collarbone. He was injured on an eight-yard strip-sack by linebacker Jordan Hicks when he fell on his left shoulder. Romo finished the game going 18/27 for 195 yards.
Eagles running back DeMarco Murray, who downplayed his first game against the franchise he led the league in rushing with last season, had 13 carries for two yards, though he was much more effective in the passing game with five catches for 53 yards.
The Dallas defense redeemed themselves from a zero-takeaway performance last week with three on the afternoon. A blocked punt by safety Danny McCray offered linebacker Kyle Wilber the chance to scoop up the loose football for a 26-yard touchdown. Linebacker Sean Lee picked off a Sam Bradford pass intended for tight end Zach Ertz. Defensive tackle Nick Hayden recovered a mishandled shotgun snap to Bradford immediately after the Cowboys tight end Gavin Escobar had fumbled a catch to give the Eagles possession to start the drive. Safety J.J. Wilcox also managed to intercept Bradford, who finished the afternoon going 23/37 for 224 yards, one touchdown, two interceptions, and a 65.6 passer rating.
Lee led all Dallas defenders with 9 tackles. Linebacker Anthony Hitchens was the only Cowboys defender to record a sack.
Receiver Terrance Williams filled in nicely for the injured Dez Bryant, catching four passes for 84 yards, including a game-sealing 42-yard catch on third-and-11. Tight end Jason Witten had a team-high seven catches for 56 yards, and backup running back Lance Dunbar caught three passes for 45 yards, including a 38-yard reception.
Penalties also marred the victory as the Cowboys committed a franchise-record 18 penalties for 142 yards. The Eagles by comparison had eight penalties for 60 yards.
Dallas broke open the game with a 20-yard Dan Bailey field goal to take a 3-0 lead with 1:42 left in the first quarter. The rest of the second quarter would be scoreless and yardless for both teams as the Cowboys added another 28-yard Bailey field goal with two seconds left until halftime to take a 6-0 lead.
Coming out of the halftime break, McCray blocked a Philadelphia punt that Wilber recovered to help Dallas take a 13-0 lead with 12:44 to go in the third quarter.
The Eagles finally got on the scoreboard with 14:21 thanks to a 46-yard Cody Parkey field goal to cut the Dallas lead to 13-3. The Eagles were added by an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Bailey when he scuffled with Murray out of bounds on the Cowboys sideline.
With 4:20 to go in the game, backup quarterback Brandon Weeden, who finished going 7/7 for 73 yards, a touchdown, and a 149.7 passer rating, hit Williams for a 42-yard touchdown to increase the Cowboys lead to 20-3.
The Eagles found the end zone when Bradford threw a six-yard touchdown pass to receiver Jordan Matthews with 1:26 to go in the game to make it 20-10. Philadelphia failed to recover the onside kick, and Dallas ran out the clock to go 2-0 on the season and sit atop the NFC East as the Eagles fall to the bottom of the division at 0-2 with the New York Giants.