No one really gave the Cowboys a chance to beat the Patriots, but certainly there were some elements in place to keep it close. The suspended duo of defensive end Greg Hardy and middle linebacker Rolando McClain were supposed to aid the defense in keeping the game close.
Hardy did his job with two sacks against quarterback Tom Brady. The defense fed off the pressure with McClain getting a sack, along with eight tackles, and defensive tackle Tyrone Crawford and defensive end Jack Crawford each getting a sack.
However, the Cowboys offense had five three-and-outs on their first seven drives in the first half. Ultimately, the defense wore down and the flood gates opened. Brady finished the game going 20/27 for 275 yards and two touchdowns and also rushed for a one-yard score on a QB sneak.
Cowboys quarterback Brandon Weeden, on the other hand, went 26/39 for 188 yards and an interception. That pick and also a rare once-every-five-years fumble by tight end Jason Witten contributed to the Cowboys tying or losing the turnover differential for the third straight week.
Running back Joseph Randle carried the ball 15 times for 60 yards for the Cowboys. With running back Lance Dunbar on injured reserve, backup Darren McFadden led Dallas with nine catches for 62 yards.
The Patriots got on the board early with a 49-yard field goal by kicker Steve Gostkowski to lead 3-0 with 8:24 in the first quarter.
The Cowboys responded with a 10-play drive that stalled with kicker Dan Bailey hitting a 51-yard field goal to knot the game at 3-3 with 1:52 in the first quarter.
New England did not score their first touchdown until 1:52 to go in the second quarter when Brady rushed for a one-yard touchdown. The Patriots took a 10-3 lead after a Gostkowski extra point.
Before the half, Gostkowski nailed a career-long 57-yard field goal to give the Patriots a 13-3 lead heading into halftime.
New England got the ball to start the second half, and marched 80 yards in nine plays as running back Dion Lewis caught a 10-yard touchdown from Brady to extend the lead to 20-3 with 9:55 in the third quarter.
Dallas was unable to convert a third-and-4 from the Patriots 7-yard line and had to settle again for a Bailey field goal, a 23-yard attempt that narrowed the margin to 20-6 New England with 1:22 in the third quarter.
With 13:10 to go in the fourth quarter, Brady hit receiver Julian Edelman in stride for a 59-yard touchdown to make it 27-6 Patriots.
Gostkowski added a 34-yard field goal with 4:42, extending the Patriots' lead to 30-6, the game's final score.
*This is the first three-game losing streak in the Jason Garrett era. The last time the Cowboys faced a three-game losing streak was amid Wade Phillips' five-game losing streak in 2010 that ultimately cost him his job, and ushered in Garrett as interim head coach.
*Hardy has now played three-straight regular season games with multiple sacks.
*Brady becomes the third quarterback in NFL history to have four 4-0 starts. The other two are Peyton Manning and Fran Tarkenton.
*McFadden's nine catches were the second-most of his career.
*The last time Witten lost a fumble was on Oct. 25, 2010 against the New York Giants after Jon Kitna was filling in for Tony Romo, who had broken his collarbone earlier in the game.