The Dallas Cowboys confirmed their dominance at the top of the National East division after their 38-10 victory over the Washington Commanders.
The Cowboys will host the Green Bay Packers in the first round of the playoffs next week.
Dak Prescott threw four touchdown passes in the win, including two to CeeDee Lamb. He completed 31 of 36 passes for 279 yards despite one interception.
The Commanders, for their part, had practically turned the page on this difficult season (4-13) ahead of the next draft, in which they will have the possibility of selecting second overall. This concludes this third season in the NFL for Quebec native Benjamin St-Juste, the team’s third-round selection in 2021.
Prescott put the Cowboys ahead with a pass to Jalen Tolbert in the end zone on their first possession of the game.
The visitors then missed the opportunity to extend their lead. In the final game of a potentially historic season in which he made his first 35 field goals, Brandon Aubrey saw his 32-yard attempt blocked by Joshua Pryor, then Jace Whittaker recovered the ball. Aubrey was two points shy of the all-time record for field goals made in a perfect season, set by Mike Vanderjagt of the Indianapolis Colts, who has held it since 2003. He was tied for second with Gary Anderson of the Minnesota Vikings. (1998).
The commanders capitalized on this mistake. Brian Robinson tied the game by catching Sam Howell’s handoff in the second quarter.
The rest was up to Dallas. Tony Pollard took a few strides to complete the touchdown, while Prescott connected with CeeDee Lamb for a 21-10 halftime lead.
Returning from halftime, Prescott again made Lamb his target to cap a long 12-play drive that lasted more than six minutes of play in the third quarter. Then, after a blocked punt by Peyton Hendershot to recover the ball at the Washington 9, the quarterback joined Brandin Cooks in the pay zone.
Despite the loss, Terry McLaurin reached the 1,000 receiving yards mark for the fourth consecutive year, the longest streak in Washington history.
A nightmare for the Eagles
The Eagles’ final regular-season game almost turned into a nightmare. In addition to the 27-10 loss at the hands of the New York Giants, Philadelphia lost the services of its star receiver AJ Brown due to a knee injury suffered during the 1is quart.
Brown fell on his right leg while receiving a tackle from Nick McCloud.
In addition to Brown, safety Reed Blankenship, starting right guard Cam Jurgens and cornerback Sydney Brown left the game due to injuries.
Quarterback Jalen Hurts sprained the middle finger on his right hand, but was able to remain in the game before being removed from the game, as were several of the team’s starters, as the Eagles lost 24-0.
With these misfortunes, the Eagles lost all hope of winning the NFC East division. Philadelphia needed a win combined with a Cowboys loss to the Commanders to secure home-field advantage heading into the playoffs.
Nick Sirianni’s men wanted to find their rhythm coming into the game with four defeats in their last five games, but this objective was not met and the questions will be even more numerous ahead of next week’s game without tomorrow.
Puka Nacua’s record against No. 1
The Los Angeles Rams had another chance to celebrate Sunday before looking toward the playoffs with a 21-20 victory over the overall-leading San Francisco 49ers.
Puka Nacua broke a 63-year-old rookie record. He beat Bill Groman and his 1,473 receiving yards. He also caught his 105th pass of the season, another mark for a rookie.
Carson Wentz threw two touchdown passes to win. He scored on a 12-yard run with 4:56 remaining before making a two-point conversion with a pass to Tutu Atwell to seal the game.
LA held on to this advantage to secure sixth place in the National, heading to Detroit for the first round next Sunday.
In two more sensible matchups, the Las Vegas Raiders defeated the Denver Broncos 27-14 to conclude the season.
Aidan O’Connell threw for 244 yards and two touchdowns to earn an eighth straight victory over their AFC West rivals.
Davante Adams caught 100 passes for the fourth consecutive season, the record is held by Antonio Brown, who did it six times.
Both clubs leave with an 8-9 record, out of the playoffs.
The Kansas City Chiefs, who won the AFC West title, defeated the Los Angeles Chargers, who are last in this section, 13-12.
With the Chiefs assured of the third playoff spot, Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce were notably absent. Under these circumstances, Kelce finished 16 yards shy of an eighth consecutive 1,000-yard receiving season.
The Chargers have lost their last five games of the season, including the last three after the firings of head coach Brandon Staley and general manager Tom Telesco on Dec. 15.