DALLAS – The Packers drew closer and were driving for more as the third quarter ended with Green Bay trailing Dallas, 21-15, on Sunday at AT&T Stadium.
Here's a recap of the first three quarters.
Both teams scored on their opening possession, and the Cowboys took a 7-6 lead over the Packers into the second quarter.
The Cowboys made a big play early on the game’s opening drive. Facing third-and-13 on the first series, QB Dak Prescott found WR Brice Butler deep over the middle for 49 yards to the Green Bay 29. Four plays later, RB Ezekiel Elliott converted on fourth-and-1 with a 2-yard run to the 18.
After a 4-yard tackle for loss by LB Clay Matthews, Prescott hit TE Jason Witten for 14 yards to make it first-and-goal on the 8. On a third-down incomplete pass, LB Blake Martinez was called for a personal foul for a hit on a defenseless receiver, and Prescott hit WR Cole Beasley for a 2-yard touchdown to finish the drive.
The Packers came right back. Rookie RB Aaron Jones carried twice for 20 yards, WR Randall Cobb caught two passes for 11, and QB Aaron Rodgers hit TE Lance Kendricks for 24 yards to make it first down on the Dallas 12. Rodgers then found WR Davante Adams for a 10-yard touchdown, but K Mason Crosby’s PAT hit the right upright, leaving the Cowboys ahead, 7-6, with 4:01 left in the quarter.
A pair of passes to WR Dez Bryant gained 28 yards and got the Cowboys moving again on their next drive. A 9-yard pass to Witten converted on third-and-4, and when the quarter expired, the Cowboys faced third-and-6 from the Green Bay 25.
The Cowboys scored touchdowns on their first three possessions and took a 21-12 lead over the Packers into halftime.
Prescott converted the third down by scrambling out of trouble and finding FB Rod Smith for 18 yards to the Green Bay 7. Two plays later, Prescott hit Beasley over the middle for a 5-yard touchdown, and the Cowboys led 14-6 with 13:37 left in the half.
As that drive was finishing, the Packers announced that rookie CB Kevin King was being evaluated for a concussion.
Green Bay went three-and-out, absorbing two sacks on the series, and punted from deep in its own territory. Dallas took over on its own 43.
Prescott scrambled for 21 yards up the middle on third down to get the Cowboys right back into scoring range. Prescott then converted on fourth-and-short with a sneak to the Green Bay 20. A 6-yard pass to Witten made it first-and-goal on the 10, and Prescott hit Bryant for the TD with 6:10 left in the half.
The Packers got moving again on a 13-yard pass to Cobb on third down. A 16-yard pass to TE Richard Rodgers got Green Bay across midfield. Consecutive passes to Adams picked up 12 yards and another first down at the Dallas 31 at the two-minute warning.
Rodgers was sacked on first down, but a pass to Cobb and a facemask penalty gave the Packers another first down at the 18. A diving 9-yard catch by Jones made it first-and-goal on the 7, and Jones ran it in from there with 54 seconds left. Crosby missed another PAT, wide left this time, and the Cowboys led, 21-12.
Prescott hit Witten on back-to-back throws for 13 yards, and a 12-yard pass to Beasley got the Cowboys to midfield with 18 seconds left, but the Packers got a sack on the final play of the half.
The Packers got the ball to start the second half and began with a 7-yard Jones run and a 33-yard pass to a leaping TE Martellus Bennett. A 5-yard run by Jones was followed by a 14-yard pass to WR Jordy Nelson for a first down at the Dallas 16.
Jones ran for 13 yards for a first-and-goal on the 3. After Jones lost one yard, Rodgers threw incomplete to the end zone twice, and Crosby was good from 22 yards out to get the Packers within 21-15.
The Cowboys converted again on third down with a 5-yard pass to Bryant to move the chains. But a screen pass to WR Terrance Williams on third-and-12 picked up only 10, and the Cowboys punted for the first time in the game. Dallas downed the punt at the Green Bay 12.
Green Bay’s next drive began with a strange play. Rodgers was ruled in the grasp for a sack by DE DeMarcus Lawrence, but DE Benson Mayowa was flagged for a personal foul, giving the Packers a first down anyway.
Jones than ran 22 yards for a first down at the Green Bay 39, and four plays later it was fourth-and-1. The Packers decided to go for it, and Jones picked it up with a 10-yard run across midfield. Jones ran for 7 and Rodgers scrambled for 4 more for a first down on the Dallas 31.
The Packers then faced third-and-10 from there, after a false start on LG Justin McCray, and the Cowboys were called for defensive holding on a deep pass for Nelson, giving Green Bay a first down on the 26. A 5-yard run by Jones and an 11-yard slant to Adams made it first-and-goal on the 10 as the quarter expired.