Facing the NFL's worst pass defense in Texas Stadium was exactly the combination Troy Aikman needed.
Aikman had his best game in months, throwing for 242 yards, including an eight-yard touchdown pass to David LaFleur, to beat Philadelphia, 20-10, today and keep the Cowboys undefeated through six home games.
By taking more chances downfield instead of settling for dump passes, Aikman was able to jump-start a Dallas offense that had scored just one touchdown in 11 quarters.
The Cowboys (7-6) found the end zone twice for the first time in four games, and they won without points from their special teams or defense for the first time since the season opener. And they did it without Emmitt Smith, who left with a strained groin after one carry.
Aikman, though, wasn't ready to call this a breakthrough, probably because it came against the Eagles (3-11), the league's 30th-ranked defense and 31st against the pass.
"Everybody wants to know how much the team progressed one week to the next, but I don't know," said Aikman, who was battling flu. "I think it's unfair to say whether you did or didn't make progress."
Aikman came out chucking, throwing a season-high 25 first-half passes. He finished 22 of 40 for his most attempts and completions since the season opener as Dallas got 11 of its 22 first downs through the air.
Dallas remained tied with the New York Giants, a game behind Washington in the NFC East. Despite a 1-6 road record, the Cowboys are 6-0 at Texas Stadium for the first time since finishing 8-0 in 1981.
Philadelphia lost quarterback Donovan McNabb to a sprained left knee ligament late in the third quarter. He will be reevaluated Monday.
McNabb wasn't effective anyway as the Eagles lost their fourth straight to finish 1-7 on the road, losing the last five. The league's most generous team handed out three more turnovers, although the Cowboys didn't score off them.