LANDOVER, Md. - His back and leg were hurting, but Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo ignored the pain to deliver his share of anxiety to the Eagles and their passionate fans.
Romo's fourth-down touchdown pass late in the game gave the Cowboys a comeback, 24-23 win over the Washington Redskins on Sunday at FedEx Field, assuring a showdown for the NFC East title against the visiting Eagles this Sunday.
The winner will make the playoffs and the loser will go home.
"Today we felt like we were playing for everything," Romo said. "Next week will be the same thing, so we will go do it again."
On the winning play, Romo scrambled enough to buy himself time and hit running back DeMarco Murray near the goal line. Murray bulled over while being hit by DeAngelo Hall to complete the 10-yard scoring pass that gave Dallas a 24-23 lead after Dan Bailey's extra point with 1 minute, 8 seconds left.
"It was definitely a scramble play, but we had some stuff I thought would give us a chance to attack them in spots where they had to get deep if they were going to take away some of the other stuff," said Romo who completed 17 of 27 passes for 226 yards and two touchdowns with one interception.
For Murray, it was pure redemption for the previous, disastrous play when he lost 9 yards on third and goal from inside the 1.
Murray ran wide left, then reversed field and was tackled by Perry Riley for the loss. Murray said he was trying too hard to make something happen.
He came back to make arguably the biggest play of this up-and-down season for the 8-7 Cowboys.
"It was a great decision by Romo," Murray said. "The offensive linemen gave him plenty of time back there, I was able to get open, and he hit me right there and that was it."
Dallas trailed by 23-14 after Kai Forbath kicked a 47-yard field goal on the first play of the fourth quarter.
The Cowboys got three back on Bailey's 25-yard field goal with 6:09 left. That came a play after Romo overthrew an open Dez Bryant in the end zone.
The Cowboys chewed up 8:47 on that drive.
Trailing by 23-17, Dallas took over from its own 13-yard line with 3:39 remaining, a drive that ended with Murray's fourth-down touchdown catch.
A key play was a 51-yard reception by Terrance Williams.
Romo said his back was hurting entering the game and he tweaked it early in the contest.
"It definitely just made it not feel comfortable," he said.
The Cowboys led by 14-6 at halftime, but Dallas went into turnover mode to begin the second half.
Redskins cornerback Josh Wilson forced and recovered a fumble after fullback Tyler Clutts made a 4-yard reception. Kirk Cousins made the Cowboys pay by eventually hitting Pierre Garcon for an 8-yard TD.
Garcon had 11 receptions for 144 yards and a touchdown. He broke Hall of Famer Art Monk's Redskins franchise record for most catches in a season by getting to 107 on Sunday with a game to go. Monk had 106 in 1984.
Romo was intercepted by Hall on Dallas' next series and Washington (3-12) again capitalized. Alfred Morris' 4-yard run gave the Redskins a 20-14 lead.
That set the stage for the Dallas comeback.
"The more times you put yourself in these situations, you have to keep getting better," Romo said. "You have to have a stronger belief in yourself than the doubt of other people."