Packers humiliate Cowboys
Green Bay blowout leaves Dallas reeling
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Every time it seemed as though the Dallas Cowboys hit their low point, Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers knocked them down another notch.
Rodgers threw for 289 yards and three touchdowns, Brandon Jackson scored twice, and Green Bay routed the free-falling Cowboys, 45-7, last night.
It was a nadir in a lost season for the Cowboys (1-7), who came into 2010 with Super Bowl aspirations. And it’s sure to kick off a new round of speculation about the future of coach Wade Phillips.
“We have so many things that we need to correct and address that this game so vividly exposed,’’ owner Jerry Jones said. “I’ve got a lot of work to do. I’ve got a lot of decisions to make.’’
But he declined to pinpoint when a coaching decision could be expected.
“I think everybody in this country would agree that there’s something wrong with this team, and I’ve got to address it,’’ Jones said.
James Jones caught eight passes for 123 yards and a touchdown for the Packers (6-3).
Green Bay’s Clay Matthews added a final dose of embarrassment in the fourth quarter, picking off a pass from Jon Kitna and running it back 62 yards for a touchdown.
“I got lucky out there,’’ Matthews said. “It wasn’t the prettiest interception — or Lambeau leap. Got to work on my skills.’’
Dallas fell behind, 28-0, late in the second quarter, giving up three long touchdown drives before fumbling away a kickoff that was returned for a TD by Nick Collins.
Return man Bryan McCann appeared to be down before he gave the ball away — but the Cowboys didn’t have any timeouts left, so they weren’t able to challenge the call. It was just another misstep in a colossal downward spiral for the Cowboys.
Meanwhile, Green Bay continued to show how a team with Super Bowl expectations is supposed to handle a disappointing start to the season, winning its third in a row after a 3-3 start.
About the only serious mistake for the Packers was a personal-foul penalty on Collins, flagged for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Cowboys receiver Roy Williams in the third quarter.
Green Bay’s defense contained Cowboys quarterback Jon Kitna, who again was filling in for an injured Tony Romo and threw for 183 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions.
Packers rookie cornerback Sam Shields made an acrobatic interception of a deep pass by Kitna to set up Rodgers’s 9-yard screen pass to Jackson for a 7-0 lead early in the second quarter.
A sack by Matthews forced a punt on the Cowboys’ next possession. After a 12-yard scramble, Rodgers heaved a 22-yard completion to Jones as cornerback Mike Jenkins slipped and fell. Rodgers went right back to Jones on the next play, finding him for 31 yards over Terence Newman to set up first-and-goal at the 2. Jackson plowed in for his second touchdown. After the Cowboys were forced to punt again, Rodgers led another long drive, ending with an 8-yard TD pass to Greg Jennings.