Dallas Cowboys beat Washington *skins, 27-23

Dallas Cowboys running back Alfred Morris (46) carries the ball into the end zone for a touchdown past Washington *skins free safety DeAngelo Hall (23) during the second half of an NFL football game in Landover, Md., Sunday, Sept. 18, 2016. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

It was an old-school match-up that had all the trimmings.

Lead changes. Fourth-down gambles. Field goals. A third-quarter onside kick. Turnovers. And more.

In the end, the Dallas Cowboys edged Washington 27-23 in a key, early NFC East game at FedEx Field.

Dallas rookie quarterback Dak Prescott completed 22 of 30 passes for 292 yards to get his first NFL win. He scored his first NFL touchdown in the third quarter on a 6-yard run.

"He's very good on the move. You saw some of that last week (against the New York Giants) and in the preseason. He can be very effective throwing the ball from the pocket, in the dropback game, in the shotgun game, the play-action, run-action game and then the movement game. You saw all of that today," Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said.

Rookie Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 83 yards on 21 carries and one touchdown. He fumbled twice and lost one. Dez Bryant had seven catches for 102 yards. Bryant only had one catch in the opener last week against the New York Giants.

"(Offensive coordinator) Scott Linehan did a great job mixing things, mixing personnel, mixing formations, moving guys around," Garrett said. "I thought we stayed aggressive throughout the game."

The defense, with two sacks and an interception, made the Cowboys' (1-1) road effort hold up.

"That's the way we want to play. We want to be aggressive. We want to be downhill. That applies to coaches and that applies to players," Garrett said.

Trailing 23-20, Barry Church intercepted Kirk Cousins in the end zone early in the fourth quarter.

The Cowboys used the turnover to drive 80 yards for the go-ahead score with Alfred Morris scoring on a 4-yard run to make it 27-23.

The Redskins drove to their 44. On fourth and 1, Cowboys linebacker Justin Durant batted down a pass intended to Pierre Garcon on a slant route to kill the drive.

The Cowboys were forced to punt and the Redskins got the ball back with 1:30 left to play.

However, a fourth-down Hail Mary pass from the Cowboys' 41 on the final play of the game sailed out of the back of the end zone.

"Everybody kept great poise, playing with composure throughout the game and obviously at then at the end of the ballgame to do what we needed to do to win it," Garrett said.

The Redskins drop to 0-2. Cousins completed 28 of 46 passes for 364 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Dustin Hopkins had three field goals.

Dallas took the opening kickoff and drove from their 20 to the Redskins' 5.

Bryant had two catches for 35 yards on the drive and Cole Beasley had two grabs for 39 yards.

However, with first and goal at the 5, the Cowboys struggled.

Two incompletions and a 1-yard run by Elliott forced a 22-yard field goal by Dan Bailey for a 3-0 lead.

After forcing a punt and being aided by a missed connection between Kirk Cousins and a wide open Jamison Crowder, the Cowboys followed with a 94-yard drive.

The drive took only nine plays. The big play was a fourth-and-1 gamble at the Redskins' 30 when Prescott threw a 28-yard completion to tight end Geoff Swaim. Elliott got the touchdown on a 1-yard run for a 10-0 lead.

The Redskins countered with a 75-yard touchdown drive in eight plays.

Matt Jones got the touchdown on a 14-yard run to make it 10-7 early in the second quarter.

After an exchange of punts, the Cowboys added a 31-yard field goal by Bailey to push their lead to 13-7 at the 4:34 mark.

Dustin Hopkins tacked on a 36-yard field goal to make it 13-10 at halftime.

The Redskins began the second half with Cousins hitting Crowder on an 11-yard touchdown and a 17-13 lead.

However, the Cowboys used the running game to move into scoring position then had Prescott scramble 6 yards for a touchdown to regain the lead at 20-17.

It was Prescott's first NFL touchdown.

The Cowboys tried to fool the Redskins with an onside kick, but the ball didn't travel 10 years and was covered by Barry Church.

After the penalty, the Redskins took possession at the Cowboys' 38.

Six plays later, Hopkins made a 29-yard field goal to tie the game at 20-20 at the 2:06 mark.

An Elliott fumble led to the Redskins regaining the lead.

Elliott was stripped of the ball by Josh Norman and the ball was recovered by Dashaun Phillips.

Three plays later, Hopkins made a 22-yard field goal to give the Redskins a 23-20 lead after three quarters.

After a Dallas punt, the Redskins finally hit the deep ball with a 57-yard completion to rookie Josh Doctson.

But five plays later, Church intercepted Cousins in the end zone to kill the drive.

The Cowboys used the turnover to regain the lead.

Morris, who came to the Cowboys from the Redskins during free agency, scored on a 4-yard run to complete an 80-yard drive and give Dallas a 27-23 lead with 4:45 left in the game.

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©2016 Fort Worth Star-Telegram

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