CHICAGO (AP) — Dak Prescott was outplayed by Mitchell Trubisky. Jason Witten was very quiet, and Brett Maher made two big mistakes in the kicking game.
Right now, the biggest reason for optimism for Dallas just might be the rest of the NFC East.
Prescott’s late rally ran out of time, and the Cowboys dropped their third straight game with a 31-24 loss to the Chicago Bears on Thursday night.
Dallas (6-7) marched down the field on its first possession, capping a 17-play, 75-yard drive with the first of two 2-yard touchdown runs for Ezekiel Elliott. Then it was stuck in neutral for most of the next 2 1/2 quarters.
The Bears (7-6) ripped off 24 straight points before Elliott scored again on the first play of the fourth quarter. It was eerily similar to Dallas’ game against Buffalo a week ago, when the Cowboys scored on their first and last drive in a 26-15 loss to the Bills.
After Ezekiel’s second TD, Maher sent the ensuing kickoff out of bounds to set up Chicago at its own 40. The Bears responded with a three-play, 60-yard drive, with Trubisky scrambling for 23 yards to make it 31-14 with 13:22 remaining.
Trubisky passed for 244 yards and three touchdown, and had 10 carries for a season-high 63 yards. His previous best was 18 yards rushing in a 19-14 victory over the New York Giants on Nov. 24.
Dallas lost for the seventh time in 10 games since its 3-0 start. But it still leads the NFC East by a half-game over Philadelphia, which hosts the last-place Giants on Monday night. The Cowboys visit the Eagles on Dec. 22.
Prescott passed for 334 yards and a touchdown, but he did most of his damage with the Cowboys trying to rally in the final quarter. Witten finished with five receptions for 37 yards.
Dallas also was hurt by another missed field goal by Maher, who is 20 for 30 on the season. With the Cowboys trailing 10-7 in the second quarter, he was wide right on a 42-yard try.
Jay Cohen can be reached at https://twitter.com/jcohenap
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