Dallas Cowboys

Cowboys 27, 49ers 24 (OT): My Top 10 Observer-ations

10. Like me, were you scared to death that Jesse Holley was going to fumble while holding the ball up in premature exclamation at the end of his 77-yard overtime catch?

9. Rob Ryan may be a defensive genius, but it doesn't show when he has Anthony Spencer trying to cover tight ends 30 yards down field.

8. Who's worse? Jon Kitna throwing the ball or Alan Ball covering a receiver? I know Kitna had a touchdown and Ball an interception, but neither are plus players.

7. Was one of the refs actually using a pager to get info from the booth confirming Kyle Williams' second-quarter touchdown catch?

6. One of the biggest forgotten plays of the day was the offside penalty on San Francisco linebacker Ahmad Brooks. Without it, the Cowboys are down 14-0 and punting from their own 42 with only three minutes left until halftime. Instead, after a stay of execution it was Romo to Miles Austin for 53 yards and his first of three receiving touchdowns. From there, game on.

5. Wait, is that a picture of a scantily clad woman on the back of Rob Ryan's play sheet? Yes, I believe it is.

4. If you're going to totally blame Romo for last week's meltdown, you've got to give him full credit for Sunday's comeback. He broke a rib on the game's third play when Brooks beat Kyle Kosier and planted a helmet just under the quarterback's armpit upon release of a pass caught by Jason Witten. Hurting, down 10 on the road and with no Dez Bryant, no running game and taking snaps from backup center Kevin Kowalski, Romo generated a victory in a game the Cowboys had no business winning. Sorta like last week he made mistakes in a loss the Cowboys had no business losing. Regression Romo, meet Redemption Romo. Call it even?

3. Confidence level in Dan Bailey as he lined up for the potential game-tying 48-yard field goal on the last play of regulation? On a 1-10, 1. Gutsy, gorgeous kick. He also pushed wide right a 21-yard field goal, which has to be the shortest miss in franchise history.

2. Obviously Romo's pass to Holley was perfect, but the play-fake to Tashard Choice was also a beauty. Pulled safety Donte Whitner in for a step and a half-count, allowing Holley to get seperation down the field.

1. Join me in apologizing to Holley. The reality-show star is now officially a real football player. Never thought I'd see it happen. Glad I did.

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Richie Whitt
Contact: Richie Whitt

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