PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Dallas scored big on all sides of the ball and pumped some life back into the NFC East race.
Tony Romo threw a pair of touchdowns, Dwayne Harris had a 78-yard punt return TD, and Brandon Carr returned an interception 47 yards for a score to lead the Dallas Cowboys to a 38-23 win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.
The Cowboys improved to 4-5, and are second in the NFC East, 1½ games behind the New York Giants, who lost to Cincinnati earlier Sunday.
The Eagles (3-6) lost Michael Vick to a concussion after consecutive bruising hits in the second quarter and have lost five straight games under coach Andy Reid for the first time in his 14 seasons.
Nick Foles filled in for Vick and briefly rallied the Eagles until the Cowboys started showing some touchdown versatility. Romo hit Dez Bryant on a 30-yard pass on the final play of the third quarter, and Harris and Carr scored their TDs in the fourth quarter.
The win, and a break in the schedule, could propel the Cowboys back in the thick of the division race. They will play five of their next six games at home, starting Sunday against Cleveland.
The loss could speed up the countdown clock on Vick and Reid’s time in Philadelphia.
Foles hit the field in the second quarter and was greeted by a loud ovation from a crowd that had become fed-up with Vick’s erratic play.
Vick was knocked on his back by linebacker Ernie Sims on an incomplete pass and was slow to get up. He headed for the locker room and Foles started warming up. Vick, however, may have been injured on the previous play when he was driven from behind head-first into the ground by tackle Jay Ratliff.
Foles, a fan favorite without ever throwing a regular-season pass, looked like an instant hit and woke up a sleepy crowd in the third when he hit Jeremy Maclin for a 44-yard TD and a 14-10 lead. Alex Henery kicked a 40-yard field goal to make it 17-10.
Foles was rolling, the Eagles were scoring, and the good times were back at Lincoln Financial Field.
But in a season unraveling with each bumbling defeat, the Eagles were knocked down to reality.
Romo, who finished 19 of 26 for 209 yards, ended the third with a 30-yard TD pass to Bryant that evened the score at 17-all.
Dallas coach Jason Garrett had insisted the Cowboys weren’t desperate after losing four of five. The Cowboys were dominant and had their way in the fourth.
Early in the fourth, Foles had an interception return for a touchdown wiped off the board on a holding penalty. No worries, Dallas. Harris returned a punt 78 yards for score and a 24-17 lead that silenced the crowd.
On the next drive, Foles had an interception returned for a score that counted, this pass intercepted by Carr and returned 47 yards for a touchdown and a 31-17 lead.
That was it for the fans in green, who fled for the exits. Stanley Havili had a 1-yard TD run with 1:55 left but Henery missed the extra point.
It got worse for the Eagles. Foles fumbled after he was sacked and Mike Jenkins recovered for the touchdown and put the finishing touches on the win.
In the final minutes, fans behind Dallas’ bench unrolled a banner that read, “Andy, Quit, Your Team Has!”
Vick, the four-time Pro Bowl quarterback, has struggled this season and entered with 10 touchdowns and nine interceptions.
He looked like his old self on the first drive of the game, completing passes for 17 and 31 yards, before connecting with Riley Cooper for a 2-yard TD pass. Cooper made a sensational one-handed grab on a fade route and gave the Eagles their first points on their first drive of a game all season.
The fun was short-lived when Romo hit Felix Jones on an 11-yard TD pass. Dan Bailey kicked a 30-yard field goal to send the Cowboys into halftime with a 10-7 lead.
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