Robert Griffin III raised his fists, took a knee for a quick prayer, jumped up and pointed to the sky.
That’s the routine on touchdown passes for the Heisman Trophy winner from Baylor, and he got to do it four times in his impressive return to Texas.
Griffin threw for 311 yards, and Washington built a huge halftime lead against Dallas before holding on for a 38-31 victory in Arlington, Texas, that conjured memories for some of a rally that helped make Cowboys vs. Redskins on Thanksgiving famous.
“He’s kind of like ‘Cool Hand Luke,’ ” Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said. “He doesn’t get too upset about anything.”
Griffin made the Cowboys (5-6) look like an overmatched college team in the second quarter, throwing for three scores in Washington’s first 28-point quarter in 13 years as the Redskins (5-6) built a 28-3 halftime lead.
After Tony Romo threw the longest touchdown of his career — an 85-yarder to Dez Bryant late in the third quarter — Griffin answered by becoming the first Redskins quarterback with four touchdown passes in consecutive games.
And finally, when the Cowboys got within a touchdown and really had people thinking back to Clint Longley’s miracle TD to Drew Pearson in the final seconds of a one-point Dallas victory over Washington on Thanksgiving in 1974, Griffin calmly led the Redskins on a clock-killing drive to a 48-yard Kai Forbath field goal and a 38-28 lead.
Romo lost for the first time in six starts on Thanksgiving, despite a career-high 441 yards and three second-half touchdown passes. After the long TD to Bryant, who matched his career high from last week with 145 yards receiving, Romo ran in a 2-point conversion after a TD throw to Felix Jones, and threw another score to Bryant to help Dallas close to 35-28 with 8:24 remaining.
“I thought we had a good chance,” said Romo, who tied a career high with 62 pass attempts.
Griffin responded with his game-clinching drive.
“I told the guys that that was probably the drive that saved our season,” Griffin said. “You have a huge lead, the other team’s roaring back, they have all the momentum, and then you go out there and you convert third down after third down after third down and get in field goal range.”
Texans 34, at Lions 31 (OT): Houston took advantage of a big mistake by Detroit coach Jim Schwartz.
Shayne Graham’s 32-yard field goal with 2:21 to go overtime lifted the Texans past the Lions after Schwartz broke an NFL rule on a scoring play.
Detroit kicker Jason Hanson had a chance to get Schwartz off the hook, but his 47-yard field goal attempt on the fifth possession of the extra period hit the right upright.
Schwartz threw a challenge flag when Justin Forsett scored on an 81-yard touchdown run for Houston (10-1) in the third quarter. Replays showed Forsett was down near midfield, but Schwartz negated the automatic review by challenging the play and was called for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Arian Foster ran for 102 yards and two scores for the Texans, including a 1-yard run with 1:55 to play in regulation that tied it at 31.
Detroit (4-7) has lost three straight.
Patriots 49, at Jets 19: Tom Brady threw three touchdown passes and ran for a score as New England embarrassed New York with a 35-point second quarter.
After a scoreless opening quarter, the Patriots (8-3) went on a touchdown spree while taking advantage of several mistakes by the hapless Jets (4-7). New England scored four touchdowns in a little more than 6 minutes – including three in a 52-second span.
Julian Edelman returned a fumble for a touchdown and caught a 56-yard pass for a score before leaving with a head injury. Shane Vereen caught an 83-yard scoring pass, Steve Gregory had a 32-yard fumble return for a TD, Stevan Ridley had a 9-yard run and Wes Welker had a 3-yard scoring grab that helped make Bill Belichick the eighth NFL coach with 200 career victories, including the playoffs.