Gene Stallings didn’t care how it looked, just so his Phoenix Cardinals had the most points.
Earl Ferrell scored from 1-yard with 50 seconds remaining Sunday to give the Cardinals a 16-10 victory over the Dallas Cowboys, who slipped deeper into their worst season in 25 years.
“It wasn’t a good game, but we won, and I’ll worry about what to fix on Monday,” Stallings said.
Phoenix (5-4) broke a 2-game losing streak, while the Cowboys (2-7) lost their 5th straight.
Cardinal quarterback Neil Lomax hit Ernie Jones on a 42-yard pass play to the Dallas 3, setting up Ferrell’s touchdown.
“It seemed it wasn’t going our way, but we kept fighting and fighting and knew something good was going to happen,” Lomax said. “The Cowboys have the tallest team in the league. It’s very frustrating getting my passes knocked down all day.”
The Cardinals’ winning 61-yard drive started after Cedric Mack intercepted a pass by Dallas quarterback Steve Pelluer.
Dallas safety Bill Bates said a pick helped Jones get open for the key catch near the end of the game.
“It’s like a basketball pick play,” Bates said. “Two receivers cross, and (defensive backs) Manny (Hendrix) and Vince (Albritton) got picked off, and all of sudden the guy was running free.
“Sometimes there’s a question whether it’s a legal play, but they didn’t call it. You look for it, but when they run it correctly, there’s nothing you can do.”
Phoenix fell behind, 10-0, in the 3rd quarter, but a 47-yard run by Ferrell set up Al Del Greco’s 32-yard field goal with 2:38 left in the period.
Ferrell also caught a 14-yard touchdown pass from Lomax to tie the score with 7:53 left in the game.
“It was a shame,” Dallas Coach Tom Landry said. “We played well and had a good chance to win. “It came down to the last few minutes and the pass interception.
“We have hurt ourselves in the last 2 minutes of games. But this is a young team, and once that happens 3 or 4 times like it has this season, you are going to think about it.”
After a scoreless first half, Dallas took a 3-0 lead in the 3rd quarter on Roger Ruzek’s 39-yard field goal.
On their next possession, the Cowboys went 80 yards in 4 plays. Herschel Walker’s 27-yard run, his second-longest of the season, put Dallas near midfield. Two plays later, Pelluer hit wide receiver Ray Alexander between two falling defenders on a 50-yard touchdown pass play.
Lomax completed 13 of 32 passes for 175 yards with no interceptions, although he was sacked 4 times. Pelluer completed only 9 of 31 for 132 yards and also was sacked 4 times.