The Dallas Cowboys’ defense doesn’t have a great pass rush and doesn’t take the ball away often.
But they have excelled in one area – preventing two-point conversions.
The Cowboys have not allowed an opposing team to convert a two-point conversion this season. The Minnesota Vikings became the latest to fail at that on Thursday night, as the Cowboys have now stopped all six two-point tries against them.
But the stop against the Vikings proved to be a game-deciding play. Minnesota had just scored a touchdown to make it a 17-15 game, and a successful two-point conversion likely would have meant overtime.
The Cowboys, though, stepped up. They got pressure on Vikings quarterback Sam Bradford, who airmailed a pass intended for Kyle Rudolph.
“That just goes back to our preparation throughout the week,” cornerback Brandon Carr said. “We’ve been repping these situations from two-minute to all types of end of game situations since Day 1. And they show up. Coach always preaches about it.
“They show up in the ball game.”
The Pittsburgh Steelers were 0-for-4 in their two-point attempts against the Cowboys, and the Washington Redskins failed on their only try during the Thanksgiving Day game. Minnesota became the latest.
The Vikings had a false start penalty that pushed them back to the 7, and Bradford found himself under heavy pressure early in the play. Cowboys defensive tackle Cedric Thornton was the first to Bradford, who wanted to get a facemask or hands to the face penalty on the play.
But that penalty wasn’t called and the Cowboys’ defense celebrated what would become their 11th straight victory.
“The D-line just played hard all night and made plays throughout the night and really did a good job finding a way to get pressure,” linebacker Sean Lee said. “I think that kept points off the board.”