As per tradition on this blog, I present to you the weekly game recap.  Since Dallas had a bye following the game against Houston, I guess there’s not much to say about this one.

Okay, moving right along…Next up for the Cowboys was the Tennessee Titans at Cowboys Stadium.  The win over the Texans, coupled with an off week before this game, left the Cowboys and their fans riding high for two weeks.  A victory the last time out was just what the doctor ordered, and this was going to be the turning point, the moment when Dallas became the team it was expected to be in the preseason.

And back to reality.  In what turned out to be another close game, the Titans defeated the Cowboys 34-27, preventing Dallas from getting its first home victory of 2010.  This recap by ESPN blogger Matt Mosley sums it up better than I could (especially since it’s been a while since the game was played).

Here’s a refresher for those who need it.

As has been the case so far this season, Dallas dominated most statistical categories, including first downs, total yards, and time of possession.  However, penalties and turnovers did in the Cowboys yet again.  Dallas had almost 100 more penalty yards to go along with three turnovers (all Tony Romo interceptions), to none for Tennessee.

Perfect examples of both of these problems came late in the game and were outlined by Mosley.

Quarterback Tony Romo had a huge day in the passing game, but he made a back-breaking mistake in the fourth quarter that allowed the Titans to take a 27-20 lead.

The clip of Romo’s late interception is in the above video.  Romo threw a late pass to TE Martellus Bennett that was intercepted inside the Dallas 20 yard line.

David Buehler was the only one who could stop Marc Mariani from returning this kick for a touchdown.

After the Titans scored, however, there was still plenty of time to tie it, which the Cowboys did, only to see Tennessee take the lead again after an abnormally boneheaded move by Jason Witten and Marc Colombo.

The Cowboys tied the score at 27 on a touchdown pass to Jason Witten in the fourth quarter. The tight end flipped the ball to right tackle Marc Colombo to let him spike the ball. The two of them then did a leaping chest-bump, which led to Colombo landing on his backside. According to an NFL rule, a player cannot go to the ground during a touchdown celebration. And I guess poor coordination isn’t a plausible defense. The 15-yard penalty meant that kicker David Buehler couldn’t get a touchback, which contributed to Marc Mariani’s 73-yard return. The Titans quickly scored to make it 34-27.

There was absolutely no reason for this to happen.  I can understand getting excited, but this didn’t make any sense.  Both of these guys are veterans who should know better.  Don’t get me wrong, Jason Witten is a great tight end, and I’m glad Dallas has him, but this uncharacteristic move by him really cost the Cowboys in this game.

Stop me if you've seen this before.

And let’s not forget the big play given up by Mike Jenkins to Kenny Britt.  In a play reminiscent of the big pass he gave up to Johnny Knox of the Bears in week 2, Jenkins was fortunate that he managed to get a hand on Britt to keep him from scoring a touchdown.  At times in this game, Vince Young looked like an all-pro QB, which says a lot about how the secondary performed in this game.

As always, there were positives to take away from this game.  Miles Austin, Roy Williams, and Jason Witten each had huge games receiving, as all three came close to, or in Austin’s case, exceeded, the 100 yard receiving mark.  Also, Felix Jones churned out over 100 yards rushing on just 15 carries.  Romo’s gaudy passing numbers overshadow the fact that Dallas had some semblance of offensive balance in this game.

At times this season, Wade Phillips must have felt like Bill Murray, because his team kept losing games for virtually the same reasons.

Record to this point:  1-3

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