Dak Prescott passed for a touchdown and Tony Pollard ran for a score as the visiting Dallas Cowboys defeated the reeling New Orleans Saints 27-17 on Thursday night.
Prescott threw for 238 yards, including a 1-yard touchdown pass to Michael Gallup, as the Cowboys (8-5) overcame the absence of head coach Mike McCarthy and four assistant coaches due to COVID-19.
Defensive coordinator and former Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn was acting head coach as Dallas won for just the second time in five games.
Taysom Hill, making his first start at quarterback this season, passed for 264 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions for the Saints (5-7), who lost their fifth consecutive game. He also ran for a career-high 101 yards on 11 carries.
Brett Maher kicked a 42-yard field goal to pull the Saints within 13-10 midway through the third quarter.
Pollard ran 58 yards for a touchdown that gave the Cowboy a 20-10 lead late in the third quarter.
Carlos Watkins intercepted a Hill pass and returned it 29 yards for a touchdown with 2:52 remaining in the game. Two plays later, Hill threw a 70-yard touchdown to Deonte Harris.
Late in the first quarter, Dallas drove 80 yards in six plays as Prescott and Gallup teamed on their touchdown for a 7-0 lead. New Orleans failed to score in the first quarter for the fifth consecutive game.
However, Hill threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to Lil’Jordan Humphrey early in the second quarter to tie the score.
Dallas responded on the ensuing possession as Prescott drove the team to Greg Zuerlein’s 55-yard field goal for a 10-7 lead.
Zuerlein added a 34-yard field goal as time expired to increase the lead to 13-7 at halftime.
At halftime, the Saints inducted the late Sam Mills into their Ring of Honor. Mills, a linebacker who started his professional career in the USFL, played with the Saints from 1986-94 before going to Carolina. He was named last month as a semifinalist for the Class of 2022 of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.