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NFL Game Summary - Chicago at Dallas
(Monday, October 1st)
Final Score: Chicago 34, Dallas 18
Arlington, TX (Sports Network) - The last time Tony Romo threw five interceptions, the Dallas Cowboys escaped with a win.
It was a much different outcome on Monday night.
Charles Tillman and Lance Briggs each took back interceptions for touchdowns in the Chicago Bears' 34-18 rout of the Cowboys.
"Just outstanding play by our defense," Bears head coach Lovie Smith said. "It seemed like everybody had a say in it.
Jay Cutler threw for 275 yards and two touchdowns on 18-of-24 efficiency and Brandon Marshall gained 138 yards receiving with a score on seven catches for Chicago (3-1), which defeated the St. Louis Rams last Sunday.
Matt Forte, a game-time decision due to a high ankle sprain suffered during the Rams contest, carried the ball 13 times for 52 yards.
Romo, who matched a career-high with his five picks, did the same during an Oct. 2007 game against the Buffalo Bills. Nick Folk's 53-yard field goal as time expired, though, gave Dallas an improbable 25-24 victory.
Romo registered 307 yards and a score through the air on 31-of-43 passing for the Cowboys (2-2), who defeated the Tampa Buccaneers last Sunday.
"We have a pretty good feel for what their front is going to do, what their pressures were, what their coverages were," Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett said. "They're just very good at it. It's not very exotic."
Jason Witten caught 13 balls for 112 yards and a score, while Dez Bryant hauled in eight passes for 105 yards in the setback.
Holding a 10-7 halftime advantage, the Bears seized control of the contest by recording the game's next 14 points.
A diving Devin Hester brought in a 34-yard touchdown on a play-action post pattern on the fifth play of Chicago's opening series of the second half.
Following a Major Wright interception on the Cowboys' next drive, the Bears committed a blunder of their own.
Linebacker DeMarcus Ware strip-sacked Cutler from behind and fellow linebacker Victor Butler pounced on the loose ball for the recovery at the Chicago 27- yard line.
Just one play later, however, heavy pressure by defensive tackle and hometown Texas alumnus Henry Melton forced Romo to lose the football. It popped up into the air and into the waiting arms of the linebacker Briggs, who rumbled 74 yards the other way down the left sideline for a 24-7 Chicago advantage.
"How about Lance Briggs? You guys didn't know he could run that fast," Smith said.
Dan Bailey and Robbie Gould then exchanged field goals on the team's next two possessions, 39 and 21 yards, respectively, which made it 27-10 early in the fourth.
On Dallas' next touch, Romo was picked off for the final time, this time by cornerback D.J. Moore.
The Bears took advantage of the mistake on the sixth play of their ensuing march. Cutler flipped a short pass to Marshall at the Dallas 20-yard line and he waltzed in untouched the rest of the way for a 31-yard touchdown and a 34-10 lead.
Witten added a 5-yard score in the waning seconds and Bryant caught the two- point conversion to conclude the scoring.
Earlier, Gould capped off a 13-play, 69-yard drive with a 43-yard field goal for the game's first points with 4:15 to play in the opening half.
Just three plays into Dallas' ensuing trek, a miscommunication between Romo and Bryant led to Tillman's interception, and he walked in for a 25-yard score and a 10-0 Chicago lead.
Romo found Miles Austin for gains of 12 and 19 yards, before the undrafted Monmouth product took a short pass over the middle for a 10-yard touchdown, which cut the deficit to three heading into the locker room.
Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray carried the ball 11 times for 24 yards and added 57 yards receiving on seven catches ... The Cowboys outgained the Bears, 430-360 ... Chicago was 7-of-12 on third down, while Dallas finished 3-of-9.
10/02 02:46:20 ET
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