Snap infraction? Another unusual ending for Cowboys at FedEx Field

LANDOVER, Md. – Five yards for a snap infraction.

Jason Garrett said he had seen it called, “Once? Twice? Not very often.” No players inside a dejected Dallas Cowboys locker room Sunday after their 20-17 loss to the Washington Redskins had heard of that being called before, least of all long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur, who was flagged for what was called a false start.

“I don’t know what happened. I was down. In the corner of my eye, it looked like they jumped,” right guard Zack Martin said. “Obviously the refs saw something different, but again, it doesn’t come down to that kick. It comes down to what we did in the game leading up to that. We didn’t do enough to put ourselves in position to win the game.”

Of course, that is the correct answer. The Cowboys don’t need Brett Maher to make a 52-yard field goal attempt to get to overtime if the offense could have protected better, run the ball better and connected on passes down the field or if the defense could have stopped Adrian Peterson or come up with a takeaway.

But when it comes to Cowboys-Redskins, it seems like something out of the ordinary often happens, especially at FedEx Field.

Nov. 5, 2006

In the middle of Romo-mania, the Cowboys looked like they were about to leave with a win. It was up to Mike Vanderjagt making a 35-yard field goal attempt on the game’s final play. Instead, Troy Vincent blocked the kick, Sean Taylor picked it up and returned the ball to the Dallas 44.

A facemask penalty moved the ball to the Dallas 29 and Nick Novak made a 47-yarder on an untimed play for a 22-19 win.

Ladouceur was the only player remaining from that game on the field Sunday, although Tony Romo, whose pass to Jason Witten set up the potential winner, was in the booth for CBS.

Sept. 12, 2010

The Cowboys opened the season at FedEx Field with an air of confidence after making it to the divisional round of the playoffs in 2009.

With four seconds left in the first half and 64 yards from the Washington end zone, Jason Garrett opted to run a play with Romo throwing a check-down to Tashard Choice. The running back fought for yardage but cornerback DeAngelo Hall ripped the ball free and ran 32 yards for a touchdown at the end of the first half.

With three seconds left in the game, Romo threw what appeared to be a 13-yard touchdown pass to Roy Williams. But a holding penalty on Alex Barron wiped out the score and the Cowboys left with a 13-7 loss.

They started that season 1-7 with Wade Phillips getting fired at the midway point.

Dec. 30, 2012

For the second straight year, the Cowboys were in a de facto NFC East Championship game. In 2011, they lost to the New York Giants but were in position for a fourth-quarter comeback against the Redskins.

In 2012, down 21-10 with 6:35 to play, Romo hit Kevin Ogletree for a touchdown and Dwayne Harris for the two-point conversion. The defense held with an Anthony Spencer sack on the next drive, giving Romo the chance for a fourth-quarter comeback.

After a 14-yard pass to Witten, Romo attempted to float a pass to the sideline to DeMarco Murray, who leaked out from the protection. One problem, linebacker Rob Jackson did not rush the quarterback as Romo thought, and he was in perfect position for the interception.

Jackson would intercept just one more pass in his career.

Dec. 22, 2013

Romo left in searing pain running down his back because of a herniated disk, but comforted by a 24-23 win that kept the Cowboys’ playoff hopes alive.

With 3:39 to play, the Cowboys trailed 23-17 but completed three passes, including a 51-yarder to Terrance Williams, to the Washington four. DeMarco Murray picked up three yards on first down, was stopped for no gain on second down and lost nine yards on third down.

With 1:16 to play the Cowboys called timeout. Again Murray leaked out wide to the right and Romo looked his way, leading him to the end zone on fourth-and-goal.

Five days later, Romo had his second back surgery in a calendar year, and with Kyle Orton as their starter against Philadelphia, the Cowboys lost their third straight NFC East title game.

Dec. 7, 2015

In their previous game, the Cowboys lost Romo for the season to a twice-broken left collarbone. Matt Cassel started for Romo but the offense floundered without their starting quarterback all season.

After Kirk Cousins threw a touchdown pass to tie the game with 44 seconds to play, Lucky Whitehead returned the ensuing kickoff 46 yards. Cassel threw back-to-back completions to Dez Bryant for 20 yards to set up Dan Bailey for a 54-yarder that gave the Cowboys a 19-16 win.

It was their only win in a game not started by Romo that season.

Presumably, Ladouceur’s pre-snap routine was the same before Bailey’s attempt as it was Sunday for Maher's.