San Francisco 49ers stave off the Dallas Cowboys for 23-17 win to advance to NFC Divisional Round

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The San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys playoff rivalry runs deep. Combined, they have won ten Super Bowls. They met on Sunday for the first time in the postseason since 1995. And they didn't disappoint.

The 49ers (11-7) held on after a fast and furious Cowboys rally to win 23-17 from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The 49ers win was the first for a road team thus far in the playoffs. They advance to the NFC Divisional Round to face the No. 1 seed, the Green Bay Packers. 

After a Jimmy Garoppolo interception, Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott led his team down the field. Prescott took matters into his own hands when the Cowboys approached the goal line and ran for a five-yard TD to make it a 23-17 game. After each team had a possession, the game came down to the Cowboys having to drive 75 yards to win the game with 32 seconds remaining. Prescott led the Cowboys to the 49ers 40-yard line with 14 seconds to go. Prescott inexplicably ran a quarterback sneak in the middle of the field. Instead of sliding early and spiking the ball to give the Cowboys a shot at the end zone, he kept going, finally sliding to the 24-yard line. The Cowboys (12-6) had no timeouts left to stop the clock. They ran up to spike the ball. The umpire bumped into Prescott in an attempt to set the ball. Right as the Cowboys got set, time expired, and the 49ers pulled off the upset. 

Garoppolo went 16-of-25 for 172 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. Prescott was 23-of-42 for 254 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

The 49ers could be a good omen for them. In the previous four meetings between the teams, the victor went on to win the Super Bowl.

Here is what happened between the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys.


49ers pull off the upset

With 0:14 seconds, Prescott runs for a 20-yard quarterback sneak to the 49ers 25-yard line. Time is running out as they try to line up. The umpire needs to touch ball. He runs into the center, fumbles the ball. The center gets the ball to Prescott but it's too late as time runs and the 49ers win 23-17. Unbelievable way to end the game. What was Prescott thinking there? Not the play to run with little time left and needing a touchdown to win the game.   

Cowboys have a shot

There are 0:32 left in the game and the Cowboys have the ball on the 20-yard line. Here we go.

49ers stop the Cowboys

On fourth-and-11, the 49ers bring house and force Prescott to make an off-balance throw that hits the hands of Wilson but he couldn't hang on and the ball goes back to the 49ers. Not much time left for the Cowboys. 

Two-minute warning

We are at the two-minute warning with the 49ers still leading 23-17. The Cowboys have the ball and are in 49ers territory.

Cowboys in 49ers territory

Prescott rolls out and is on the verge of getting sacked. He fires a 32-yard pass to Schultz to get into 49ers territory. 

Huge third-down play by the Cowboys

On third-and-seven, Garoppolo throws to Samuel but Kyle VanderEsch stuffs him to prevent the first down and force a punt. Big-time play by the leader of the defense. 23-17 49ers with 2:42 remaining. Here we go!

13th penalty of the game is a costly one

On third down, there was an incomplete pass by Garroppolo but another flag on the Cowboys, this time for illegal hands to the face. Lack of discipline by the Cowboys.

Dak Prescott makes it a one-score game

With nowhere to go, Prescott rolls out to a massive opening and makes it to the end zone for a five-yard touchdown run to make it 23-17 49ers. Now we got some suspense with 8:02 left to go.  

Cowboys interception

Garoppolo rolls out and throws an interception to Brown, who runs it to the 49ers 30-yard line. A huge shift in momentum. Can feel it inside AT&T Stadium.

Questionable field goal

Greg Zuerlein makes a 51-yard field goal to trim the lead to 23-10 49ers. Have to question why head coach Mike McCarthy didn't go for it on fourth-and-five in a two-score game. Nothing is gained with a field goal as it still remains a two-score game.

Fake punt

On fourth-and-five, the Cowboys do a fake punt and convert it to a first down. What a play.

End of third quarter

After three quarters, the 49ers lead the Cowboys 23-7. The Cowboys have the ball to begin the quarter. It comes down to the final 15 minutes of the game. 

Touchdown 49ers

On the very first play after the interception, Samuel speeds to the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown. The 49ers are up 23-7 late in the third quarter. What a turn of events. Could the Cowboys season be over?  

49ers interception

Interception by the Jackson off of Prescott to give the 49ers the ball on the Cowboys' 25. They are in trouble.  

Cowboys force 49ers to finally punt

For the first time in the game, the Cowboys force a punt after making Garoppolo throw it away on a third-and-two. A monumental moment for the Cowboys on this upcoming drive. Need some type of points here to stay within striking distance.

Big third-down conversion

For the second time in the game, Garoppolo converts a third-down throw to Jennings. 

Huge loss for 49ers

Just announced that star defensive end Nick Bosa is out for the game with a head injury. 

Lapse in judgment by 49ers

A personal foul penalty to the punter results in a Cowboys first down. Another bad mistake from both teams. Who wants to win this game?

Horrid possession by the Cowboys

They had a manageable third-and-four, the Cowboys' offensive line commits two inexcusable false starts to make it third-and-14. Then Prescott gets sacked for a six-yard loss. Mental lapses you CANNOT make.

Second half

The second half has begun with the Cowboys getting the ball. Critical possession for them.

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