Turnovers Help Minnesota Rout Cowboys, 43-3

<i> From Associated Press </i>

The Minnesota Vikings made sure Kevin Sweeney’s magic didn’t last much longer than the opening kickoff Sunday night.

Wade Wilson threw three touchdown passes and the Vikings took advantage of seven turnovers and beat Dallas, 43-3. It’s the fourth-worst loss in Cowboys’ history.

Minnesota spoiled Sweeney’s 1988 debut as a starter with a tremendous pass rush. Sweeney threw three touchdown passes in the second half against the New York Giants last week.

“I was very concerned about our offense in the first half but our defense was controlling the game,” Minnesota Coach Jerry Burns said. “Our offense did just enough. I sure thought it would be a close game. The Cowboys are a little down, but someday I’d like to have as many wins as Tom Landry.”


Wilson completed 12 of 27 passes for 240 yards before being taken out early in the fourth period. But he wouldn’t take any credit.

“Our defense is what won the game,” he said. “They put pressure on Sweeney and they shut Herschel Walker down. When we play like this we can play with anybody in the league.”

The Vikings improved their record to 7-4 to stay within two games of first-place Chicago in the NFC Central. Dallas, meanwhile, tumbled to 2-9, its worst season since 1960.

Sweeney completed 10 of 28 passes for 93 yards, was intercepted twice, sacked 5 times--once for a safety--and fumbled twice.


“I made some stupid mistakes and I just wished I had a yo-yo swing on some of my passes so I could pull them back,” Sweeney said.

Tommy Kramer replaced Wilson in the fourth quarter and took the Vikings on a 56-yard scoring drive in just 4 plays. D. J. Dozier made it 41-3 with on a 19-yard run.

Dallas had its second-best crowd of the year, 57,830.