Anthony Spencer had 23.5 career sacks before Sunday. His sack of Cam Newton was one of the biggest of his career, right up there alongside the sack and forced fumble that sealed the victory over the Redskins last season and his two-sack performance against the Eagles in the 2009 regular-season finale.
Spencer's takedown of Newton resulted in a 10-yard loss, but bigger, it ran 21 seconds off the clock. It left Carolina with only 3 seconds and one play to try to go 64 yards for the win."It felt real good," Spencer said. "It felt even better to get the win. It was a team effort. It was real good coverage. He was holding the ball for a while. It felt good, though."
Spencer had missed the past two games with a strained pectoral muscle. He had six tackles, a sack and a quarterback hit in his return against the Panthers.
“Spencer was the complete difference,” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. “I’m so proud of him.”
For Spencer, it had been a long time coming. He was injured in the victory over Tampa Bay on Sept. 23, and watched losses to the Bears and the Ravens from the sideline.
He all but ended the Panthers' comeback attempt Sunday.
“He looked great,” Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan said of Spencer. “He is still banged up. He gave us all he had, and that was good enough to get the big sack.”
-- Charean Williams