Week 5: Another Gut Wrenching Loss 25-24
Bills find another excruciating way to lose on last play.
by Steve Saslow
Just when you thought there wasn't another way for the Bills to lose in gut wrenching, shocking, surprising, awful, incredible fashion, they did. The vaunted special teams unit failed at the worst time when they allowed Dallas to recover in onside kick with just :18 left in the game. The defense played valiantly the whole game forcing a shocking six turnovers in a losing effort. They failed after the onside kick that not only was recovered by the Cowboys, it was recovered 23 yards downfield. That meant they only had to move 12 yards to setup rookie kicker Nick Folk's game winning 53 yard field goal. He even had to kick it twice as the first one was good but the Bills had called timeout. The second kick counted and the Cowboys escaped Buffalo with a 25-24 win.
Tony Romo threw five interceptions, four in the first half, and two were returned for touchdowns. The special teams also scored a touchdown when Terrence McGee went 103 yards for a score. So I ask you, how do you lose a game when you have three touchdowns and six turnovers from your defense/special teams units? You don't... unless you are the Buffalo Bills.
There was a wave of emotion in the stadium as they fans and players were fired up and ready for their first home Monday night game since 1994. The defense got it going quickly when wide receiver turned starting free safety George Wilson picked off a pass and returned it 25 yards for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
The Cowboys would tie it early in the second quarter on a Jason Whitten touchdown where he blew by the returning Keith Ellison. The Bills offense moved downfield for their only scoring drive, a Rian Lindell field goal to make it 10-7.
The defense followed through as Chris Kelsay batted a Romo pass in the air and caught it himself for a touchdown and a 10 point lead. The Bills could have went ahead by more at the half but Lindell missed from 54 yards setting up a Cowboy drive to a Folk field goal before the half making it 17-10 at the half. Angelo Crowell and Jabari Greer had the other two first half interceptions.
The Cowboys pulled within four with a third quarter field goal but McGee's kickoff return for a score gave the Bills an 11 point lead and hope for a win. It appeared the game turned when Trent Edwards threw an interception that was returned 74 yards by Terrence Newman. The defense stiffened though as Romo threw a pick to John DiGiorgio. In the second half, Romo would also lose a fumble that was stripped by Aaron Schobel.
Despite all those big defensive plays, the Cowboys still managed a drive to the game tying touchdown with :20 left that is when the ups and downs got even too cruel for the hardened Bills fans. The crowd was very emotional all night and they never sat down. When Greer knocked the ball away from Terrell Owens on the two point conversion attempt it appeared that the fans would be rewarded for their excellent work as a victory seemed to be in hand.
This is the Bills though, it is never over until the final second ticks off the crowd and more often than not at home this year it has ended with the opposing kicker hitting it through the uprights as the clock turns 00 to send the Bills faithful home with gut wrenching one point losses. This is another shocking loss that has to deflate the team that played with incredible heart on defense only to have their most successful unit fail in the end. As usual, the Bills found another way to lose a game, give them an A for creativity but how much more can the fans take?
Here are our exclusive gameballs and goats from the Bills game against the Cowboys, despite the loss there was more good than bad: