Cowboys’ receivers combine for big day with big plays

Posted Sunday, Oct. 06, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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The playmakers came to play for the Dallas Cowboys, especially those on the other end of Tony Romo’s record-setting passing performance.

Dez Bryant, Jason Witten and rookie Terrance Williams combined for 413 yards and four touchdowns on 17 receptions in Sunday’s wild 51-48 loss to the Denver Broncos.

“We feel strongly about the guys we have on that side of the ball, and we’re continuing to evolve into what we think we can do,” Romo said.

The Cowboys had three receivers with at least 100 yards for just the second time since 1963.

“We took advantage of matchups across the board,” Witten said. “The young guys played well. I thought Terrance had a great game, obviously Dez, what a playmaker he is, and Cole [Beasley] and myself.

“We were moving the ball with control. They didn’t have a whole lot of answers for us. We had some big plays that we hadn’t had most of the season. You leave this game, obviously you’re crushed, but offensively this needs to be the standard to which we play to give ourselves a chance to win.”

The Cowboys were aggressive throughout the game, taking shots downfield and taking advantage of Romo’s weapons.

“[Offensive coordinator Bill Callahan] did a good job of seeing what was open out there and what play calls would be good against this defense,” said Beasley, who had a touchdown and 47 yards receiving. “We found a little weakness and kept taking advantage of it.”

The deep throws included an 82-yard score to Williams in the third quarter and Bryant’s 79-yard catch-and-run in the fourth that set up the Cowboys’ last touchdown. Witten, Beasley and Gavin Escobar each had receptions of at least 23 yards.

“We talked about that last week,” Witten said. “In the San Diego game, we wanted to get down the field more. I thought Tony did a good job of setting it up and creating matchups.”

The afternoon served as a breakout for Williams, a third-round pick who admittedly was down after fumbling late in last week’s loss at San Diego. The Baylor product said several teammates, including Bryant and Miles Austin, offered words of encouragement throughout the week.

“I took it as a personal challenge to come back and use the talents they brought me here for,” said Williams, who led all receivers with 151 yards.

Witten expected a high-scoring affair, and the Cowboys were up to the challenge. The trick is sustaining that level of production going forward.

“It’s all about the consistency,” Witten said. “We’ll see how we’re playing four or five weeks from now. You hope that you can build on that. The reality is we’re a 2-3 football team.

“It’s tough. Regardless of who you’re playing, you want to find ways to win those games. It’s gut-wrenching to think you were right there and played so well. We knew it was going to be a shootout and we could hang with them. …We have to play better. The clock is ticking.”

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