Sat, Nov 25, 2006 - Page 19 News List

Romo steps up as Cowboys top Bucs

BETTER THAN AIKMAN? In just his fifth start after taking over for previous starter Drew Bledsoe, the new Cowboys QB has led his team to four victories

AP , IRVING, TEXAS

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, No. 9, looks to pass as Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Jon Bradley, No.98, is pushed away by Cowboys tackle Kyle Kosier, No.63, during the first quarter of an NFL football game in Irving, Texas, on Thursday.

PHOTO: AP

Tony Romo tied a Dallas Cowboys record with five touchdown passes on Thursday in a 38-10 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

It was the ninth time it's happened in team history and the first time on Thanksgiving. More impressive: Troy Aikman never did it in regulation and Roger Staubach never did it at all.

As wild as it seems to mention Romo with those Hall of Famers -- especially because this was only his fifth start -- he's certainly proving worthy.

After spending the first 3 1/2 years of his career on the bench, Romo won NFC offensive player of the week honors and outplayed Peyton Manning in his previous two starts.

Dallas has won three straight for the first time this season and is 4-1 since Romo took over for Drew Bledsoe. Now 7-4, the Cowboys go into the weekend with a half-game lead over the New York Giants in the NFC East and are second only to Chicago in the conference.

Terry Glenn caught the first two TD passes, of 30 and 2 yards. Marion Barber III caught the next two, giving him an NFC-best 11 touchdowns. The record-tying fifth touchdown went to Terrell Owens.

Tampa Bay (3-8) drove 80 yards for a touchdown on the first drive of the game, but got only a 46-yard field goal the rest of the way. Rookie Bruce Gradkowski threw two interceptions, both of which resulted in Dallas touchdowns.

Romo was 22-of-29 for 306 yards. He completed 13 straight passes at one point and was 8-of-9 in the second half; he's 28-of-30 after the half in his last three games.

Dolphins 27, Lions 10

At Detroit, Joey Harrington threw three touchdown passes in his return to Detroit, helping Miami erase a 10-point deficit for a big win.

The quarterback was drafted third overall in 2002 by the Lions, who traded him in May for a conditional draft pick that could be a fifth-rounder.

Harrington came into the game 1-3 on Thanksgiving with no TDs, five interceptions and an average of 153 yards passing. In the first half alone against his former team, he threw for two scores, an interception and 154 yards. Harrington finished 19-of-29 for a Thanksgiving-high 213 yards, three TDs and an interception.

Miami (5-6) has won four straight -- doubling Harrington's longest winning streak in any of his four seasons in Detroit. The Lions (2-9) dropped their third straight.

Chiefs 19, Broncos 10

At Kansas City, Missouri, NFL rushing leader Larry Johnson ran for 157 yards, Lawrence Tynes kicked four field goals and Kansas City inaugurated the league's new Thanksgiving tripleheader with a victory over Denver.

The Chiefs (7-4) charged into a second-place tie with Denver in the AFC West and gave the Broncos (7-4) their first two-game losing streak since late in 2004.

Johnson, raising his league-leading rushing total to 1,202 yards, consistently burned the Broncos with 8- and 10-yard gains, using his usual assortment of power moves and start-and-stop elusiveness.

Johnson scored the Chiefs' only touchdown on a 1-yard vault late in the second quarter following a crucial mistake by the Broncos' Ebenezer Ekuban, who was called for roughing the passer on a failed third-and-4 play from the 9.

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