Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett facing heat on critical fourth down decision

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(Nexstar) — The Dallas Cowboys are moving on to the Buffalo Bills, the opponent for Thanksgiving Day, but head coach Jason Garrett is still answering questions about a pivotal fourth-and-7 decision at the 11-yard line against the Patriots.

The Cowboys opted to kick a field goal with six minutes left in the game trailing New England by a touchdown. Dallas received one more (true) possession deep in their own territory in the final minutes, but failed on a fourth down attempt at the 25-yard line.

In 11 offensive possessions Sunday, the Cowboys only entered the Patriots redzone twice — settling for the field goal was a clear, missed opportunity on a great scoring chance.

Critics of the decision asked Garrett why he went for the field goal knowing that another touchdown was necessary to get a winning result in nasty weather conditions.

“If it were a more favorable fourth down situation, it would be a situation where probably (we) would go for fourth and seven. That situation, against that defense, down in that part of the field is pretty challenging. We had a play called on third down that had an opportunity to score in the end zone and an underneath option. Unfortunate, (it) just didn’t work out for us,” Garrett said. “Dak had to get flushed out of the pocket. You always have that understanding…that can be a territory that you would go for it on fourth down to keep the touchdown opportunity alive for you, if it’s manageable enough.”

INJURY NOTES: Defensive tackle Antwaun Woods sprained his knee and will not be available for Thursday’s game against the Bills. Safety Jeff Heath aggravated a previous shoulder injury. His status is up in the air.

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