NFL

The Minnesota Vikings host the New England Patriots on Thursday night, the first Thanksgiving home game in franchise history.

Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard (20) runs from Minnesota Vikings cornerman Patrick Peterson (7) during a 30-yard touchdown reception in the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, November 20, 2022, in Minneapolis. Photo AP/Bruce Kluckhohn

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Dallas Cowboys have had some tough talks with each other after their fall last week in Green Bay.

They took out all that frustration and then some on the Minnesota Vikings, who themselves may need some serious talk after their seven-game winning streak was snapped.

Tony Pollard scored a career touchdown twice for a career-high 189 yards before the play resumed, and the Cowboys sacked Kirk Cousins ​​seven career times in a 40–3 win over the Vikings.

“We sort of found our formula, just driving the ball, hitting the defense, dominating all phases of the game,” said Pollard.

Dak Prescott was flawless as a quarterback, Ezekiel Elliott rushed for two goals after coming back from injury, and Brett Maher scored four field goals – including a 60-yard tackle at the end of the first half. The Cowboys (7-3) scored in the first seven estates and the defense was just as good.

Micah Parsons and Dorance Armstrong each had two sacks in the fifth-biggest loss in Viking history – and the biggest road win in Cowboys history.

“This league has a way of humiliating any football team at any time if you don’t play your football well,” said Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell.

The Vikings (8-2) were the comeback king of the NFL season with the smallest win margin average in 90 years, no more remarkable than last week in Buffalo when they turned a 17-point deficit late in the third quarter into an overtime win.

Parsons promised Prescott and the att*ck this week that the Cowboys would never again lose a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter, as they did last week for the first time in franchise history when they lost to the Packers in overtime.

“I welcome constructive criticism,” Parsons said, “and when you have that balance of understanding, it’s fine and giving it back turns out to be really good.”

With amazing ease, they executed a near-perfect game plan by offensive coordinator Kllen Moore and defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.

After submitting 200 rushing yards in consecutive games for the first time since the inaugural 1960 season, the Cowboys turned the tables, gaining 108 ground yards in the first half. Seven of the eight third-place conversions were rushed.

A snapshot of the afternoon came shortly after halftime as the Cowboys faced a third and 14. Taking his time to shoot, Prescott found Pollard in a one-on-one with defender Jordan Hicks and threw a pass close to the touchline to score. Score 68 yards which gave Dallas a 30–3 lead.

“That touchdown was all Kellen,” Prescott said, praising his quarterback.

The Vikings were so out of order that they had six penalties for 54 yards in the third quarter alone. Cousins ​​finished the game 12-for-23 for 105 yards and lost the game, which Parsons forced with a sack on the blind side when the Vikings first attempted the pass. Justin Jefferson, who had a career-high 193 yards against the Bills, had 33 yards from three paws.

“We have a lot of work to do in a short time,” said Hicks.

Pollard, the Cowboys’ most dangerous offensive weapon all season, Prescott and Elliott were wasting time with injuries, and CeeDee Lamb was still the No. 1 receiver, finishing with six catches for 109 yards and 15 tackles for 80 yards.

“He can do a lot of different things to help this offense and this team, and he just keeps showing that,” Prescott said.

So much for close games

The Vikings suffered their biggest margin of defeat since November 14, 2011, when they lost 45-7 at Green Bay. The Cowboys won their biggest victory since beating Buffalo 44-7 on November 13, 2011.

Although Minnesota still holds the second-best record in the NFC, all but one of its wins were in single-scoring games, with two losses totaling 54 points. Overall, Minnesota was defeated 231-229.

Just kick

Maher has four field goals over 60 yards in his career, the most in NFL history. Twice he hit as far as 60 yards, after stopping late for a replay, he negated the first throw he made before the Cowboys heard the whistle. Maher’s three marks came from over 50 yards, making him a single-season team record with seven.

Injury report

Cowboys: LB Anthony Barr (hamstring) was inactive against his former team. He played eight seasons for the Vikings. DT Quinton Bohanna was also scratched (illness). … CB Kelvin Joseph (illness) missed the second half.

Vikings: LT Christian Darrisaw was out early for a second game in a row due to a concussion. … C. B. Andrew Booth Jr. started his first career for fellow rookie Akayleb Evans (concussion). DT Dalvin Tomlinson (calf) missed his third game in a row.

next

Cowboys: Hosting the New York Giants on Thursday. The Cowboys defeated the Giants 23–16 on September 26. Dallas lost three games in a row on Thanksgiving.

Vikings: Thursday night hosts the New England Patriots, the first Thanksgiving home game in franchise history. The last time they played was in 2017 in a 30-23 win over Detroit.

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