Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 12/9/12
CINCINNATI -- For the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday was opportunity wasted. For the Dallas Cowboys, it was emotion captured. And because the Cowboys were able to deal with the emotions of a gut-wrenching weekend that saw one of their practice squad players killed in an auto accident and another teammate charged with intoxication manslaughter, they were able to deal with the Bengals and leave Paul Brown Stadium with a 20-19 win. Make no mistake, though, the emotion ran high, and the Cowboys pain at the death of practice squad lineman Jerry Brown cut deep. The mix of feelings was only exacerbated by the reality that nose tackle Josh Brent spent the day in jail, charged with alleged drunk driving that led to the death of his college roommate and friend. "I told our team," coach Jason Garrett said after the Cowboys kept their playoff hopes alive, "this is uncharted territory." The Cowboys draped Brown's jersey across the bench during the game; after it was carried off the field by DeMarcus Ware. Lawrence Vickers' voice broke in the locker room as he talked about the fact he was blessed to be able to wake up to play Sunday when a teammate did not. Tony Romo candidly admitted "there's no playbook for this kind of thing in life." And Garrett talked eloquently and at length about what he tried to tell the team after relaying the news of Brown's death. "He loved being part of our team," Garrett said. "And he showed it every day." He continued. "This is hard for everybody to handle " Garrett said. "We lost a 25-year-old man who had his whole life in front of him." Garrett, to his credit, did not trivialize what happened by saying the team used football to get past their emotions. He talked as if the team faced the emotion in honest and true ways, and he merely said he told the team the best way they could honor Brown was to play well. "There was a feeling of numbness on the field," Garrett said. "But they focused and found a way to win." The Cowboys did it by doing what everyone does when they deal with death or tragedy -- they keep living, and do their jobs. Dallas struggled for three quarters, but managed to hang around as the Bengals could not extend a third-quarter lead of 19-10. In the end, the Bengals contributed to their own defeat. They dropped three interceptions. They had some bizarre play-calling. With BenJarvus Green-Ellis averaging 7.4 yards per carry, they threw and threw and threw. When Dallas cut the lead to 19-17, the Bengals got the ball with 6:35 left and threw five passes in a row. Green-Ellis' last run came with 11:59 left and the Bengals up nine. Dallas only gave the Bengals one more possession and it was all pass. They also had two critical drops by standout receiver A.J. Green. One would have been a touchdown on a slant that was set up perfectly, the other would have kept a drive alive for a first down. Receivers don't catch them all, but to see it happen to Green was borderline shocking. "It starts with me," said Green, who sat at his locker and waited to address the media after the game. "As I go the team goes." The Bengals also wasted their second-half timeouts early, and when they needed them late so they could stop the clock and get the ball back with time left they didn't have one. Cincinnati had a sloppy game on an important day. "It's disappointing to lose a game that you have in hand, and then lose in the last two drives," coach Marvin Lewis said. The Bengals were forcing the Dallas offense into some very poor possessions. Defensive tackle Geno Atkins almost controlled the game for three quarters. Too, Pittsburgh and Baltimore both lost, which would have put the Bengals in position to control their playoff fate. Instead, they let Romo get hot in the fourth quarter. After throwing for 140 yards the first three quarters, Romo threw for 128 on 11-for-15 passing in the fourth. Included was a 27-yard dart to Dez Bryant that cut Cincinnati's lead to two. He followed by using the final 6:35 to set up Dan Bailey's game-winning 40-yard field goal on the game's last play. "The whole team is thinking about play that could have been made or should have been made," linebacker Manny Lawson said. :It's hard for everyone." But what was hard for the Bengals couldn't compare to what the Cowboys were experiencing, and everyone, including the Bengals, understood that truth. "It is a day that I am never going to forget," Garrett said of his finding the way to win. "However it is a tragic day for all of us. We will never forget about Jerry Brown."
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Le’Veon Bell vows to win appeal: ‘I’m not going to miss games’

Dallas Cowboys' team employee bus involved in fatal crash

Aldon Smith posts video under a pseudonym of a blunt on Periscope

WATCH: Cam Newton get blocked by a girl playing volleyball

Russia avoids complete ban from Rio Olympics by the IOC


Report: Padres trying to move Andrew Cashner, Derek Norris

Baseball's top prospect called up to majors by Astros

Report: Braves 'aggressively' shopping Francoeur, Aybar

Report: Hue Jackson designing plays for Terrelle Pryor

Report: Darnell Dockett expected to announce retirement

Report: Yankees have not discussed releasing A-Rod

Top storyline for each NFL team heading into training camp

Eight MLB veterans that need to be traded before deadline

Andre the Giant drank six bottles of wine before match?

Cristiano Ronaldo spars with Conor McGregor in gym

Adam Silver is the new standard-bearer for league commisioners

Iowa football player held at gunpoint by police while playing Pokemon Go

Eight most significant injuries going into NFL training camp

Man. U players banned from playing 'Pokemon Go?'

Ken Griffey Jr. put on backwards hat during HOF speech

Mike Piazza honors 9/11 victims during Hall of Fame speech

Jeremy Lin hints he is racially profiled by arena employees

Why did Rio mayor offer to put kangaroo in Olympic village?

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

Effect of ban on Russia could span beyond the Olympic Games

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

QUIZ: Name every city to host the NBA All-Star Game

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

One Gotta Go: NBA players make tough choices on their favorite rappers

One Gotta Go: NBA Summer League is not about that Game of Thrones life

The top NHL free agents available as offseason winds down

WATCH: NBA jersey sponsors that need to happen

Expansion draft playing heavy hand in the current NHL offseason

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker