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12/16/2012 10:06 PM EST
Cowboys top Steelers in overtime 27-24
DALLAS 27, PITTSBURGH 24

By SCHUYLER DIXON
AP Sports Writer

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- Brandon Carr found a way to silence
thousands of Terrible Towel-waving Pittsburgh fans at Cowboys
Stadium and send the Dallas crowd home happy.



The Cowboys cornerback intercepted a Ben Roethlisberger pass in
overtime, returned it 36 yards to the 1, and Dan Bailey kicked a
21-yard field goal for a 27-24 win over the Steelers on Sunday.



Bailey's kick - 1:24 into OT - won a game for the second
straight week since Dallas practice squad linebacker Jerry Brown
was killed in a one-car accident that led to manslaughter
charges against teammate Josh Brent.



The win pulled the Cowboys (8-6) into a three-way tie for first
place in the NFC East with the Giants and Redskins with two
games left in the season. Dallas has won five of its last six.



"Those are the plays you dream about in the backyard, making the
game-winning interception or touchdown," Carr said.



Carr, who said he was anticipating Roethlisberger's throw to
Mike Wallace because Steelers offensive coordinator Todd Haley
was his coach in Kansas City, made a diving catch and jumped up
along the Pittsburgh sideline. Legions of black-and-gold clad
fans on that side of the stadium watched as Carr ran it back and
was stopped inches short of the goal line.



The winning kick came after Tony Romo, who broke the 25,000-yard
passing milestone earlier in the game, took a knee to put Bailey
in better position.



Bailey beat Cincinnati 20-19 last week with a 40-yarder as time
expired, just a day after the accident that killed Brown.



The Steelers (7-7) lost for the fourth time in five games and
trail AFC North rival Cincinnati by a game for the second wild
card spot. They host the Bengals next week. Roethlisberger is
0-2 since returning from a three-game absence with shoulder and
rib injuries.



"There won't be any quit from us, especially from me,"
Roethlisberger said. "This one is going to sting real bad. It
will hopefully make me and make us better."



The defining play came from a Dallas defense playing without six
injured starters, the latest being Carr's playing partner on the
other side, first-round pick Morris Claiborne. The rookie was
sidelined after sustaining a concussion against the Bengals.



"I really can't explain it. It's something destined about this
team," defensive end Jason Hatcher said. "You look back there
and you don't know nobody back there behind you."



The score was tied 24-all in the final two minutes of
regulation. Pittsburgh quickly moved to its 46 after a
completion by Roethlisberger and a roughing-the-passer penalty
against DeMarcus Ware.



But Sean Lissemore and Anthony Spencer sacked Roethlisberger on
consecutive plays to give the Cowboys the ball back.



"Everyone has seen Ben do that in the fourth quarter multiple
times," Dallas defensive end Marcus Spears said. "We knew we had
to go back there and affect him in the pocket and at least try
to get in his way. Fortunately, those turned into some sacks for
us."



Dallas, playing with Brent watching from the sideline and
Brown's No. 53 jersey draped on their bench and his number on a
helmet decal, couldn't do anything in the final minute.



The drive stalled at the Steelers 43, and Bailey lined up for a
61-yard field goal attempt with 32 seconds left. But the Cowboys
called timeout and punted instead. Roethlisberger took a knee,
sending the game to overtime.



Roethlisberger was sacked four times and finished 24 of 40 for
339 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.



"We're still in the same situation we started in before we
came," said Wallace, who had 95 yards receiving, including a
60-yarder to set up a touchdown. "We know we win these last two
games, we're still in the tournament."



Earlier in the fourth quarter, Pittsburgh was driving for a
go-ahead score when Ware and Spencer sacked Roethlisberger at
the Dallas 40, forcing a punt with three minutes left. The
Cowboys opted to punt at the two-minute warning after a
third-down pass to Dwayne Harris was less than a yard short of
the first down.



Roethlisberger put the Steelers ahead 24-17 with a 7-yard
scoring pass to Antonio Brown, and Brown was about to put
Pittsburgh in control with a long punt return.



But Brown fumbled when Victor Butler reached out and knocked the
ball loose at the end of a 22-yard return. DeMarco Murray, who
had 81 yards on 14 carries, then went in on a 3-yard run.



"There was about five or six guys, all in black and yellow,"
Butler said. "And I see the punter and me and the long snapper
and I figure I am probably the best tackler out of the three. It
was time to make a play."



Dez Bryant extended his touchdown streak to six games while
playing with a broken left index finger, a 24-yard score that
put Romo over 25,000 yards for his career and gave Dallas a 10-0
lead.



Roethlisberger pulled the Steelers even at 10 before halftime.
He stepped away from pressure and used a couple of pump fakes to
keep pass rushers away before finding Heath Miller wide open
along the sideline on a 30-yard score.



"We still have a chance to right our wrongs here with two games
left," Miller said. "We're just going to keep chipping away at
it."



NOTES: The first Dallas touchdown was the first scoring
connection from Romo to Jason Witten this season. ... Steelers
CB DeMarcus Van Dyke injured a shoulder on Pittsburgh's first
punt less than two minutes into the game and didn't return. ...
Dallas rookie TE James Hanna had two career catches for two key
grabs on the Cowboys' first touchdown drive. ... The Grambling
State band spelled out "JB" in honor of Brown at halftime. ...
Cowboys LB Ernie Sims sustained a concussion in the first half
and didn't return. ... Attendance was 95,595, a season high at
Cowboys Stadium.



---



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