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Bengals Rip 'Awful' Cowboys

Palmer Connects With Schobel for 76-Yard Touchdown

Associated Press
Monday, November 8, 2004; Page D11

BENGALS 26

COWBOYS 3

CINCINNATI, Nov. 7 -- Tight end Matt Schobel caught a down-the-middle pass from Carson Palmer and ran 76 yards for a touchdown Sunday, leading the Cincinnati Bengals to a 26-3 victory over the Dallas Cowboys.


Safety Madieu Williams (Maryland) steps in front of Dallas's Keyshawn Johnson to make one of three Cincinnati interceptions of Vinny Testaverde. (Al Behrman -- AP)

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_____  Week 9 Games/Results _____
Washington 17, Detroit 10
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Buffalo 22, N.Y. Jets 17
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Cincinnati 26, Dallas 3
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Indianapolis 31, Minnesota 28

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_____Mark Maske's NFL Insider_____
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Giants Not Sure About Next Year's QB (washingtonpost.com, Nov 3, 2004)

Schobel, who had only 11 catches in the first seven games, broke open a game of conservative play-calling. The Bengals (3-5) turned four field goals by Shayne Graham and the one big play by Schobel into a big win.

It was another unsettling loss for the Cowboys (3-5), who have lost four of their past five.

Vinny Testaverde, who turns 41 next Saturday, had his worst game with the Cowboys. Throwing to an injury-depleted receiving corps, Testaverde was 18 of 30 for 207 yards with three interceptions and a fumble.

"That's about as bad as you can get," Dallas Coach Bill Parcells said of his team's play. "I'm really embarrassed for that kind of performance. There's no explanation for it, except we're poorly coached and we played bad. I don't know where we go from here, if anywhere.

"I really don't have much to say, fellows, except we were poorly prepared, we played poorly, we were inefficient and we were just awful."

Owner Jerry Jones was already pondering changes for the next game against Philadelphia.

"Vinny's been a real surprise of our season so far," Jones said. "He had been our most positive surprise for us going into this game. Now we may have to look at what our other possibilities are as to any personnel changes. I won't speak to that right now."

For the first time in franchise history, the Bengals came out in gaudy orange jerseys reminiscent of the XFL. The two offenses looked like something from the 1940s.

Palmer spent the afternoon throwing short passes to tight ends and running backs, finishing 21 of 32 for 212 yards along with a two-yard touchdown bootleg in the closing minutes. Rudi Johnson carried a season-high 26 times for 95 yards.

"With a young quarterback, we've been staying in a lot and protecting," Schobel said. "We always say that when we have a chance, let's make the most of it."

Graham connected from 35, 47 and 45 yards in the first half -- two of the kicks were set up by fumbles -- and had a 30-yarder in the fourth quarter.

The Cowboys tried to set the tone early, going on fourth and inches from the Bengals 22 on the opening drive. But Testaverde lost a few inches on fourth down.

A crowd of 65,721, the second-largest in Paul Brown Stadium's five seasons, repeatedly booed Cincinnati's low-risk approach, which had only one big moment.

Schobel released from the right side and beat linebacker Dat Nguyen down the middle of the field, catching Palmer's soft pass in stride. He outran safety Roy Williams to reach the end zone.

The Cowboys ran for only 109 yards against a defense allowing an average of 155.

Eddie George had only 23 yards on eight carries.


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