ARLINGTON, Texas -- Dez Bryant scored two second-half touchdowns, and the Dallas Cowboys rallied past the reeling Philadelphia Eagles 38-33 Sunday night at Cowboys Stadium.
The Cowboys (6-6) needed to beat their wounded NFC East rivals to keep their playoff hopes alive. Dallas did just that in a back-and-forth affair.
The Eagles (3-9) entered without their quarterback and with their coach's future looking bleaker daily. Michael Vick was sidelined due to a concussion, though that was hardly the only headache in Philadelphia.
Eagles coach Andy Reid's job security remains a distraction. Philadelphia was expected to contend for the division title, but the Eagles' season spiraled out of control with a losing streak that is now at eight games.
Two rookies -- quarterback Nick Foles and running back Bryce Brown -- gave the Eagles a chance. Foles, making his third start in Vick's absence, completed 22 of 34 passes for 251 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions. Brown rushed for 169 yards and two scores, but he fumbled with less than four minutes left, and Dallas rookie Morris Claiborne returned the ball 50 yards for the game-clinching touchdown.
Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo finished 22-for-27 for 303 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Romo also set the Cowboys' franchise record for touchdown passes with 166. Hall of Famer Troy Aikman held the old mark of 165.
Bryant, who amassed 98 receiving yards on six catches, has six touchdowns in the past four games. Cowboys tight end Jason Witten added 108 yards on six receptions.
Romo and Bryant connected to tie the game at 17 early in the third quarter on a 23-yard scoring pass. Buying time with his feet, Romo threw back to his left to Bryant, who caught the ball at the 20-yard line, cut upfield and outfought the Eagles into the end zone.
Philadelphia responded quickly with an 80-yard drive. Foles lofted a perfect ball to Riley Cooper from 15 yards out to put the underdogs back on top 24-17.
The Cowboys evened the score less than two minutes into the fourth on another catch-and-run touchdown, this one from Romo to Miles Austin for 27 yards.
Dallas took its first lead of the game with 4:16 remaining with Bryant bullying his way over the goal line on a 6-yard pass. Romo completed long passes to Bryant and Witten to set up the go-ahead score.
The Eagles went into halftime up 17-10 on the strength of two touchdowns from rookie Bryce Brown and Alex Henery's field goal as time expired.
The Cowboys, down by 11 in the second quarter, did get a late first-half touchdown from DeMarco Murray in his return to the field. Murray was out six games due to a foot injury.
Murray made his presence felt on his opening carry of the night, giving the Dallas offense a dimension missing since October. He sliced through the left side of the line for 14 yards and a first down on the Cowboys' initial play.
The Cowboys' running attack has been so anemic in his absence that Murray regained the team rushing lead with that first attempt. He had 35 yards at the break, including a 1-yard score with less than a minute left in the second quarter.
Philadelphia struck first with an impressive 66-yard drive that started with a 24-yard run from Brown and ended with his 10-yard touchdown late in the first quarter.
Playing from behind, a familiar position for the Cowboys, Tony Romo took Dallas down to the Philadelphia 8 before the drive stalled with a penalty and sack. Dan Bailey drilled a 39-yard field goal to get Dallas on the board.
Brown helped put the Cowboys in a bigger hole midway in the second quarter. He galloped in from 5 yards out to cap a 73-yard march that included his 39-yard burst. Brown had 107 rushing yards at the half.
NOTES: The Cowboys' inactive players were WR Anthony Armstrong, S Charlie Peprah, CB Orlando Scandrick, OL David Arkin, C Phil Costa and LB Brady Poppinga. ... The Eagles' inactive players were QB Michael Vick, WR Greg Salas, RB LeSean McCoy, RB Chris Polk, OL Nate Menkin and WR Marvin McNutt.