Originally created 11/19/96

Seven field goals send Packers packing

IRVING, Texas - The Dallas Cowboys have beaten the Green Bay Packers in some notable shootouts the past three years.

Chris Boniol's foot was the only weapon they needed Monday night.

Boniol, who was in bed with the flu for two days last week, tied an NFL record with seven field goals as the Cowboys beat the Packers 21-6, their seventh straight win over Green Bay in four seasons - all at Texas Stadium.

Boniol's first five field goals came on Dallas' first five possessions. The last two came in the second half, the final one with 20 seconds left in the game to tie the mark shared by Jim Bakken and Rich Karlis.

Right before the record-tying kick, Dallas quarterback Troy Aikman took a knee and the Cowboys called timeout to get Boniol onto the field.

After the kick, the teams milled around, with the Packers apparently angry about Dallas adding a needless score. Reggie White appeared the most upset as he jawed with Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin.

The Cowboys (7-4) pulled into a second-place tie with Philadelphia in the NFC East. Dallas trails Washington by one game, and has two games left against the Redskins.

Green Bay (8-3) lost for the second straight week, but remains in good shape in the NFC Central, two games ahead of Minnesota.

But the loss meant more to Green Bay than just a game in the standings.

Since losing 38-27 here in the NFC title game last January, the Packers had been pointing to this game as a chance to demonstrate that they had passed the three-time Super Bowl winners at the top of the conference. Instead, they lost by double digits for the seventh time in seven games in Texas.

The Packers came in severely handicapped on offense - without Robert Brooks and Antonio Freeman, their top wide receivers, and tight end Mark Chmura. All were injured and sorely missed against the NFL's leading defense.

In the first half, the Packers never got beyond the Dallas 45. In the second half, they had one good drive, and that ended when Chris Jacke missed a 32-yard field goal attempt.

That was the kind of frustration the Packers encountered all night - in the fourth quarter, a sack by White was aborted by a defensive holding call against George Koonce that led to Boniol's sixth field goal, a 39-yarder with 8:36 left that gave him a Cowboys single-game record.

Green Bay finally scored with 1:53 left on a 3-yard pass from Brett Favre to Derrick Mayes. The Packers avoided their first shutout since 1991.

After the touchdown, Dallas recovered an onside kick and drove to set up Boniol's last field goal.

The Dallas defense was a team effort led by Tony Tolbert, Chad Hennings, Fred Strickland, Jim Schwantz, and Kevin Smith.

The secondary blanketed Favre's receivers and rarely gave him a target, leading to four sacks. The defensive line and linebackers shut down the run.

Green Bay had only four first downs as Dallas took a 15-0 lead at halftime and only one big play, a 25-yard pass from Favre to Keith Jackson.

The first half was deja vu after deja vu - Dallas defense and enough offense to get Boniol into position for field goals from 45, 37, 42, 45 and 32 yards. That tied an NFL record for the most field goals in a half.

The Dallas offense made enough plays to get into Boniol's range - a 31-yard pass from Aikman to Irvin on the first series, a 25-yarder from Aikman to Eric Bjornson on the second, a 25-yard run by Emmitt Smith and a 31-yard pass to Kevin Williams.

But each time the Cowboys got deep, they stalled and Boniol trotted on for another kick.

The Packers finally stopped Dallas on the first series of the second half. But Green Bay went three and out and punted right back.

The Packers finally got a drive going late in the quarter, moving from their own 41 to the Dallas 14. But Jacke's field goal attempt went wide left.


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