Reporting Chuck Carroll
ARLINGTON, Tex. (CBSDC) — In his first attempt, Robert Griffin III has managed to do something the Washington Redskins have not been able to accomplish in their 80 seasons of existence — win in Dallas on Thanksgiving.
Griffin threw for 311 yards and four touchdowns as the Redskins held off Tony Romo and the Cowboys for a 38-31 victory.
Washington went on an improbable 28-0 run in the second quarter, that included three touchdown passes and a one-yard score from Alfred Morris.
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But Romo, who passed for 441 yards with three touchdowns, and the Cowboys would come roaring back in the second half to twice make it a one-possession game.
After a 10-yard Felix Jones touchdown, Griffin was intercepted for the first time since Oct. 14 against the Minnesota Vikings. His untimely pick came on a pass intended for Joshua Morgan.
Four plays later, Romo and Dez Bryant connected on an 11-yard touchdown to give the Cowboys second touchdown in 1:36 to pull within seven points of the lead.
An all too familiar story seemed to be replaying itself for Mike Shanahan’s club. But a fresh face would write a new chapter in the book this day.
Griffin and the Redskins chewed 5:20 off the clock and Kai Forbath split the uprights from 48 yards out to push Washington’s lead to 10 points. The 25-year-old Forbath has yet to miss a field goal since replacing the struggling Billy Cundiff on Oct. 9.
Dan Bailey’s 51-yard field goal again pulled Dallas within seven points. However, DeAngelo Hall would nearly return the ensuing onside kick attempt for a touchdown, opting to slide at the two-yard line with 12 seconds remaining. Hall’s decision to slide sealed the Washington victory as Dallas did not have enough timeouts to stop the clock on kneel downs.
Griffin’s afternoon included long touchdown passes to Aldrick Robinson and Pierre Garcon.
The 68-yard touchdown pass to Robinson was the pair’s second in as many games. Griffin and the second-year receiver found pay dirt on a 49-yard pass in the 31-6 drubbing of the Philadelphia Eagles four days earlier.
Garcon, whose nagging toe injury was a concern entering the contest, showed no signs of being slowed when he was on the receiving end of a 59-yard touchdown from Griffin, which gave the Redskins their third score of the second quarter. It was his first touchdown since he scored from 88 yards out in Week 1 against the New Orleans Saints.
Santana Moss and tight end Niles Paul added touchdowns of six and 29 yards, respectively.
Dallas’ loss was the first for Romo on Thanksgiving. His eye-opening performance included two interceptions against a Washington secondary that is again without Brandon Meriweather.
Redskins running back Alfred Morris rushed for 113 yards, bringing him within 81 yards of Reggie Brooks’ franchise-best 1,063 rushing yards by a rookie.
Griffin and the Redskins have won two straight against NFC East opponents in advance of a Monday night showdown against the New York Giants on Dec. 3.