Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott (21) runs near Seattle Seahawks cornerback Shaquill Griffin (26) during the second half of the NFC wild-card NFL football game in Arlington, Texas, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)

Cowboys hang on for 24-22 wildcard win over Seahawks

Elliott rushes for 137 yards as Dallas eliminates Seattle from NFL playoffs

ARLINGTON, Texas — Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 137 yards and the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter, and the Dallas Cowboys hung on for a 24-22 wildcard win over the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday night.

The playoff win by the Cowboys (11-6) was the first for Elliott and quarterback Dak Prescott on their second try after losing a divisional game as rookies two years ago. Dallas will play either New Orleans or the Los Angeles Rams in the divisional round next weekend.

The loss ended a run of nine straight victories in playoff openers for the Seahawks (10-7). The Elias Sports Bureau says it was the longest streak in NFL history.

Dallas’ defence, ranked in the top 10 most of the season, mostly kept quarterback Russell Wilson under control and handed him his first loss in four wild-card games.

“Our defence was great,” Prescott said. “They keep us in every game.”

It was the eighth win in nine games for the Cowboys.

“We had so much confidence coming it this game and our confidence remains,” Prescott said. “It’s all about the way we fought. … I’m proud of my guys.”

Prescott, the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2016 when the Cowboys lost to Green Bay at home as the top seed in the NFC, threw for 226 yards and had a 1-yard sneak for what appeared to be a clinching score before Tyler Lockett’s 53-yard catch set up a quick Seattle touchdown.

Wilson’s 7-yard scoring pass to J.D. McKissic got the Seahawks within four, and they made it a two-point game on their second 2-point conversion following an injury to kicker Sebastian Janikowski.

But the missing kicker left the Seahawks no good options on an onside kick with 1:18 remaining. Punter Michael Dickson’s drop kick was caught by Cole Beasley at the Dallas 31, sealing the first playoff win for the Cowboys since beating Detroit in the wild-card round in the 2014 season.

Prescott led a 67-yard drive to put the Cowboys in front. A 34-yard pass to Amari Cooper, who had seven catches for 106 yards, led to Elliott’s 1-yard plunge after an apparent touchdown by the quarterback was overturned on replay.

Prescott had a chance to give the Cowboys a 10-point lead, but K.J. Wright made a juggling interception in the end zone.

Dallas’ defence came through again, though, forcing a punt and giving Elliott and Prescott a highlight play apiece on a drive to Prescott’s 1-yard sneak for a 24-14 lead with 2:08 remaining.

First, Elliott stiff-armed Shaquill Griffin on a 17-yard run to get inside the 20, then Prescott scrambled up the middle before a head-over-heels hit from Tedric Thompson at the Seattle 1. Prescott scored on the next play.

Seattle got a double dose of bad news at halftime when Janikowski missed a 57-yard field goal on the final play and injured his left thigh. He yelled as he grabbed the back of his leg and limped to the locker room, unable to return.

Still, the Seahawks took their first lead basically because the 40-year-old’s injury forced them to try.

Facing fourth-and-5 in Janikowski’s range from the Dallas 39, Doug Baldwin made a toe-dragging catch on the sideline for 22 yards. After Wilson ran 4 yards for a touchdown, the Seahawks went for 2, pushing the lead to 14-10 on Mike Davis’ run.

But the Cowboys never did lose control of the Seattle running game after allowing Chris Carson’s first 100-yard game in a Week 3 Seattle win that turned the season for the Seahawks, who finished the regular season with six wins in seven games.

Carson had just 20 yards on 13 carries. Wilson was 18 of 27 for 233 yards, with Lockett getting four catches for 120 yards.

INJURIES

Cowboys receiver Allen Hurns appeared to suffer a severe lower left leg injury in the first quarter. Hurns was being dragged down by Seahawks safety Bradley McDougald at the end of a 14-yard catch for a first down when his lower left leg appeared to buckle. The injury was announced as an ankle injury. … Seahawks cornerback Neiko Thorpe left in the first half with a shoulder injury, and his return was doubtful.

UP NEXT

Cowboys: New Orleans or the Los Angeles Rams on the road in the divisional round next weekend.

COLTS 21, TEXANS 7

In Houston, Andrew Luck threw for 222 yards and two touchdowns and Indianapolis raced out to a big lead and cruised over Houston in the wildcard game.

Luck put on a show in his hometown, throwing for 191 yards and two touchdowns before halftime to help the Colts (11-6) build a 21-0 lead.

Running back Marlon Mack had 148 yards and a touchdown for Indianapolis, which advances to face the top-seeded Kansas City Chiefs in the divisional round next weekend.

Houston (11-6), which overcame a 0-3 start to win the AFC South, gave up too many big plays and couldn’t get anything going on offence in the first half to fall into the huge hole.

Deshaun Watson, who was sacked an NFL-leading 62 times in the regular season, was sacked three times and hit eight more times in a disappointing playoff debut. He finished with 235 yards passing with a touchdown and an interception.

The Colts, who opened the season 1-5, continued an impressive run by winning their fifth straight and for the 10th time in 11 games. Saturday was their first playoff appearance since the AFC championship game loss at New England in the “Deflategate” game in the 2014 season.

———

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

NFL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, left, speaks with Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett after the NFC wild-card NFL football game in Arlington, Texas, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Cowboys won 24-22. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

Just Posted

RCMP ask for help to ID suspect in Surrey sex assault

Police say woman was groped at a Newton bus stop on July 14

PHOTOS: It’s fur-real – dog days have returned to the White Rock Promenade

Leashed pets allowed on waterfront walkway through March 31

Filmed ‘Uprooted’ play tackles climate change with music from Surrey’s Elder-Labrie

Vancouver-based theatre company posts video of the production online

Surrey FC’s arrival in BC Premier League brings high-performance soccer to Newton

The 12-member BCSPL also includes Surrey United, based at Cloverdale Athletic Park

B.C. starts October with 82 more positive COVID-19 tests

10,899 tests a record for a single day, Bonnie Henry says

Abbotsford’s Grand River Foods reopens after COVID-19 forces temporary shut-down

Several positive results from employees shuts down plant for four days

Abbotsford family looking for pair of stolen Shih Tzu puppies

Breeder Kate Classon stated that someone stole the pooches from her Abbotsford home on Sept. 21

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Missing mushroom picker in northern B.C. found dead

Witset elder found deceased in Price Creek area more than two weeks after he vanished

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Greens focus on long-term care reform in first platform promise

Greens have promised to move away from the for-profit care home model

‘It’s a nightmare’: Northern B.C. family desperate after living in hotel for a year

Renae Podgorney says because of a lack of rentals, she’s now applying to rent a one-bedroom unit

Costs climb to more than $100K for BC SPCA to care for animals in B.C. farm seizure

Eight puppies, of the 97 animals seized have now died from parvovirus enteritis

Most Read