DALLAS (KXAN) — It was not the opening night in AT&T Stadium the Dallas Cowboys wanted Sunday.
Dallas moved to 0-7 all-time against teams with Tom Brady at quarterback in a 19-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with a disjointed offense and a defense that allowed more than 150 rushing yards.
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To make matters worse, Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott left the game in the fourth quarter with an injury to his thumb on his throwing hand and didn’t return. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Prescott will need surgery on it and “will be out several weeks.”
Prescott couldn’t do much with the offense, anyway. Under constant duress from Tampa Bay’s pass rush, Prescott was sacked twice and hit six times while the Bucs secondary batted down six passes. Prescott’s injury-shortened night ended with 134 yards on 14 of 29 passing with an interception. Cooper Rush took over after Prescott left the game and completed 6 of 14 passes for 64 yards. He was also sacked twice.
Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott was just as ineffective on the ground with 52 yards on 10 carries. His longest run of the night was seven yards.
The Cowboys’ lone score came in the first quarter on a Brett Maher 51-yard field goal with 9:04 in the frame. The Bucs offense was better, but still not great. Ryan Succop made four out of five field goals, but Brady got the offense on the board in the fourth quarter with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Mike Evans to ice the game with 3:23 left.
Brady finished the night with 212 yards on 18 of 27 passing with the touchdown to Evans. Bucs running back Leonard Fournette rushed for 127 yards on 21 carries. Evans finished the game with five catches for 71 yards while Julio Jones caught three passes for 69 yards, gaining most of those on a 48-yard pass play in the second quarter. The Bucs signed Jones in the offseason on a 1 year, $6 million deal.
Rush will be the Cowboys’ quarterback for the foreseeable future while Prescott recovers from surgery.
Dallas (0-1) hosts Cincinnati (0-1) next week. The Bengals lost to the Steelers in overtime 23-20. The Bucs (1-0) travel to New Orleans to take on the Saints. The Saints won their opener 27-26 over Atlanta.