EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo connected with tight end Jason Witten on two touchdown passes and kicker Dan Bailey's 35-yard field goal on the final play broke a 21-21 tie to give the Cowboys a 24-21 win over the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on Sunday.
The Cowboys improved to 6-5 and their win over the Giants (4-7) snapped New York's four-game winning streak. It also severely hurt the Giants' chances of climbing out of the hole they dug for themselves with their 0-6 start to the season.
The Cowboys started their game-winning drive from their own 20-yard line with 4:55 left, right after New York had scored to tie the game at 21-21.
Dallas used 14 plays to drive 64 yards before calling a timeout with four seconds left. Bailey kicked the game-winning field goal on the game's final play.
Dallas jumped out to a 14-6 halftime lead thanks to a series of big plays by both its offense and defense.
In the first quarter, Cowboys cornerback Orlando Scandrick stripped Giants receiver Victor Cruz after he had come down with a 5-yard pass completion. The loose ball was scooped up by safety Jeff Heath, who ran it back 50 yards for the touchdown.
That play marked the ninth time this season that an opponent returned a Giants turnover for a touchdown, including five yielded by the Giants' offense.
The Giants, whose first-half points consisted of two field goals by kicker Josh Brown, saw their streak of 19 quarters without allowing a touchdown pass end in the second quarter.
Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray ran for 30 yards on his team's first possession of the second quarter. Murray's run was the second longest from scrimmage given up by the Giants run defense this season, the longest being a 34-yard run by Eagles quarterback Michael Vick on Oct. 6.
After Romo completed a 17-yard pass to running back Lance Dunbar, Romo found Witten in the end zone for a 20-yard score.
The Giants were without wide receiver Hakeem Nicks, who was scratched due to a flare up of an abdominal injury first disclosed on Wednesday, and they could not get any rhythm on offense.
After turning the ball over on downs on their first possession of the third quarter, the Giants gave Dallas 21 penalty yards, none more important than the 15-yard penalty on defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka, who drew a roughing-the-passer flag.
That penalty wiped out a fumble recovery by Giants safety Will Hill on a ball that cornerback Terrell Thomas stripped from receiver Cole Beasley.
The infraction was then followed by a late hit out of bounds by safety Antrel Rolle after Murray picked up 10 yards on a carry.
With first-and-goal at the Giants' 6, it took Romo just three plays to find Witten for his second touchdown reception of the game and the tight end's fourth against the Giants this season.
The Giants managed to tie the game thanks to touchdown catches by tight end Brandon Myers and receiver Louis Murphy.
Myers alertly jumped up and ran into the end zone after realizing that neither safety Jeff Heath nor linebacker Bruce Carter touched him. That resulted in a 27-yard scoring play.
Murphy, in for Hakeem Nicks, scored on a 4-yard reception with 4:53 left in the game. The ensuing two-point conversion by Andre Brown tied the game 21-21.
But New York would not see the ball again as Dallas drove for the winning score.
With the win, the Cowboys move a half game in front of the Philadelphia Eagles, who had a bye this week. Dallas also swept the Giants for the first time since the 2007 season.
The Giants will go on the road next week to face the Washington Redskins on Sunday night in the first of two critical division games against the last-place Redskins.
New York will be looking to avenge last year's 17-16 loss to Washington, which dented their playoff aspirations.
Dallas will return home next week to host the Oakland Raiders on Thanksgiving Day.
Notes: RB Brandon Jacobs' 37-yard run in the second quarter was the longest by the Giants this season and their first run of 20 or more yards since Dec. 16, 2012, when Kregg Lumpkin and David Wilson ran for 22 and 25 yards, respectively, against the Atlanta Falcons. ... The Giants lost Jim Cordle, their starting center, early in the second quarter. He was replaced by left guard Kevin Boothe. They also lost cornerback Trumaine McBride in the fourth quarter. ... Dallas lost Dwayne Harris, their dynamic return specialist, to a hamstring injury suffered in the second quarter. They also lost cornerback Morris Claiborne to a hamstring injury in the third quarter. ... Giants quarterback Eli Manning recorded his 37th career touchdown pass against the Cowboys when he hit tight end Brandon Myers in the third quarter. ... The Cowboys' win gives Dallas head coach Jason Garrett a 4-3 advantage over Giants head coach Tom Coughlin. Coughlin's regular season record against the Cowboys fell to 12-11.