Tony Romo breaks collarbone; Giants beat Cowboys 41-35

By Mark Maske
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, October 26, 2010; 2:02 AM


The New York Giants again looked like the team to beat in the NFC East, and helped to move the competitive portion of the Dallas Cowboys' season a few significant steps closer to being over. The Giants beat the Cowboys, 41-35, here Monday night and knocked quarterback Tony Romo from the Dallas lineup with a fractured left clavicle.

Quarterback Eli Manning threw four touchdown passes as the Giants won their fourth straight game to improve their record to 5-2, putting them a game ahead of the Washington Redskins and Philadelphia Eagles atop the division. The Cowboys suffered their third loss in a row to fall to 1-5, and a season that began with them hoping to play in the Super Bowl on their home field now seems irreparable.

"I've been surprised and disappointed at our start," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. "Tonight was certainly not something I want to think about [but] we have a huge amount of season left."

Romo walked off the field after having his left shoulder driven into the turf on a second-quarter hit by Giants linebacker Michael Boley after a pass. Romo remained on the sideline temporarily and apparently tried to talk his way back into the game unsuccessfully. He was taken for X-rays soon thereafter and the Cowboys announced that he'd suffered a fractured clavicle.

Jones said that Romo is expected to be sidelined for six to eight weeks, although it's not clear yet whether surgery will be required.

"I'm sticking with this football team," Romo said. "I'm going to work my butt off to come back and do as much as I can…. It'll be tough. I'm still going to be part of it, but I'm not the guy. That will be different."

It probably doesn't matter because the Cowboys are headed nowhere. They generated little on offense while it still mattered with backup Jon Kitna at quarterback, and an early 20-7 lead-courtesy of 13 points off three Giants' turnovers-evaporated before halftime. Romo's touchdown pass to tight end Jason Witten, rookie Dez Bryant's touchdown on a 93-yard punt return and two field goals by kicker David Buehler were distant memories by night's end. The Cowboys were booed by their home crowd regularly in the second half.

"We're disappointed," Witten said. "It bothers you. But give them credit. They've got a good team.. . . Let's not kid ourselves. Any time you lose a guy like Tony, it hurts."

Manning shrugged off two early interceptions and threw two touchdown passes to wide receiver Hakeem Nicks and one each to wideouts Steve Smith and Mario Manningham. Tailback Brandon Jacobs ran for a third-quarter touchdown for the Giants.

The Giants did have five turnovers, including a third interception thrown by Manning late in the game. That led to a 15-yard touchdown pass from Kitna to Bryant as the Cowboys broke a string of 31 unanswered points by the Giants. Another Kitna-to-Bryant touchdown in the final minute gave Bryant his third touchdown of the game, but the stadium was mostly empty by then and the Giants ran out the clock after recovering the Cowboys' final onside kick.

"A lot of great football is being played by the Giants at times," Manning said. "It's just streaky. We got off toa bad start, then we played about as well as we can play. You just have to be patient."

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