With six seconds left on the clock and down a touchdown, the Dallas Cowboys found themselves in a situation that called for some trickery on their own 24-yard line to have any shot at the end zone.
But no one expected what the Cowboys did the second they lined up for the final play in the 19-12 loss to the San Francisco 49ers, who advance to the NFC Championship.
Running back Ezekiel Elliott was the center for Dallas, and no other offensive linemen surrounded him. Instead, the linemen were set out wide on the left and right side of the line of scrimmage, and it was clear the Cowboys were going to try something crazy in their last-ditch effort.
Instead, the play ended real quick.
As Elliott snapped the ball – he got run over quickly by a 49ers pass rusher – Prescott had a quick drop before throwing to rookie KaVontae Turpin, who was immediately hit to end the game.
Turpin’s lineman couldn’t get to Jimmie Ward for the block fast enough, and it was an easy one for the veteran cornerback to seal the deal.
The Cowboys’ streak of not reaching the NFC Championship since 1995 continues, and just as it did last year, it came on an odd final play.
This time, it made more sense for Dallas to try and trick the 49ers. Last season, though, when Prescott ran up the middle to gain more yardage, the clock expired and the 49ers celebrated at AT&T Stadium in Dallas.
Cowboys fans were livid considering Dallas had a shot to win the game with a touchdown. But, rather than share rage and vitriol on social media, NFL Twitter simply roasted the play design.
It’s once again back to the drawing board for Jerry Jones and the Cowboys, who will head to the offseason without fulfilling their Super Bowl goal.