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Sunday, December 18, 2011
Romo leads Cowboys over Buccaneers



Kim Klement/US PresswireTony Romo throws one of his three touchdowns as the Cowboys snap their two-game losing streak.
The Dallas Cowboys rebounded from back-to-back fourth-quarter collapses, defeating the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and snapping their two-game slide.

Tony Romo led the way offensively throwing three touchdowns and running for another all in the first half. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Romo is the first quarterback in Cowboys history to accomplish that feat in the first half.

All three of Romo’s touchdown passes were thrown outside of the pocket. He now leads the league with 10 touchdown passes outside the pocket, along with no interceptions.

Romo also had a lot of success in three wide receiver sets as all three of his touchdowns came in that formation. He has thrown 11 touchdown passes out of such formations over his last eight games, compared to just one over his first six games.

Romo finished the game with 249 passing yards giving him 20,283 yards in his 75-game career. Elias says that’s the third-most for any player in NFL history through his first 75 starts, behind Dan Marino (20,492) and Kurt Warner (20,305).

And if that's not enough, Romo’s Total QBR of 97.5 was the second-highest single-game rating this season among quarterbacks with a minimum of 30 action plays.

Another huge key for the Cowboys offense was Felix Jones who rushed for 108 yards. He was tough to take down as 49 of his 108 rushing yards (45.4 percent) came after contact. Jones averaged 2.2 yards per rush after contact, which is not surprising considering he entered the game ranked fourth in the league in yards per rush after contact (2.5).

This marked the first time in Jones’ career that he posted back-to-back 100-yard games as he tallied 106 last week against the New York Giants.

The Buccaneers on the other hand have lost eight straight games, something they have not done since dropping 11 straight over two seasons from 2008-09.

Tampa Bay was held to a season-low 190 yards of total offense, but it was their defense that was once again shredded. Before scoring a third-quarter touchdown, the Buccaneers had allowed 69 consecutive points (28 Saturday, 41 last week versus the Jacksonville Jaguars), which is the second-most in franchise history.

Over the course of their eight-game losing streak the Bucs have been outscored 256-134 (15.3 points per game).

Next week the Buccaneers will hit the road to take on the Carolina Panthers while the Cowboys host the Philadelphia Eagles as they continue their fight for a playoff berth.