The Cowboys' 16-point, fourth-quarter lead was more than enough Saturday night. They didn't even need all of their starters to hold it either.
Dallas allowed only seven first downs and 190 total yards. The defense gave up only 8 points. (The Bucs also returned a Tony Romo fumble for a touchdown.)
"I thought our defense played really, really well throughout the ball game," Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. "When you get into the second half, you get into more of managin, dealing with the clock as much as you're dealing with anything else. So, they were spreading us out, and they were able to complete the passes and move the ball a little bit more than they had been able to do in the first half. I thought they came out and played really lights out in the first half and then handled the situation in the second half really well."
The Cowboys led 28-0 at halftime, limiting the Buccaneers to 55 net yards and one first down.
“For you to do that in the NFL is tough against anybody,” defensive end Marcus Spears said. “We were on tonight.”
It was a big enough lead that DeMarcus Ware, Jay Ratliff and Bradie James sat out the second half. Ware reinjued his stinger on the second play.
"It's going to eat at me,” Ware said of sitting out the second half. “I'm going to have a couple of nightmares tonight, but you've got to do what's best for the team and get ready for next week.”
-- Charean Williams