For openers, Dallas (yawn) wins

Terrell Owens chatted amiably with his former Cowboys teammates. Chad Ochocinco wore gold shoes for his few plays.

Otherwise, the Cincinnati Bengals barely were noticeable Sunday night as Dallas won, 16-7, in the Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio.

In a game that might have made Class of 2010 inductees Emmitt Smith and Jerry Rice wince, the offenses generally sputtered and there were eight sacks. Neither team could get going with the ball in a sloppy affair.

At least some of Saturday’s other inductees — the ones who played defense, Dick LeBeau, John Randle and Rickey Jackson — could appreciate the lack of scoring and the takeaways. Dallas picked off three passes and recovered a fumble; Cincinnati also recovered a fumble.

Nobody could be impressed by the slew of penalties, 16 overall, 12 by Cincinnati for 90 yards. Then again, it was the exhibition opener.

Most of the regulars worked short shifts. At least the Cowboys’ starters looked sharp during their minimal stints.

Tony Romo led them to the Cincinnati 2 with a steady opening drive before they stalled and David Buehler kicked a 20-yard field goal. Romo was 5-for-10 for 59 yards.

“You just have to continue to work on the things we’ve been doing through the offseason and in training camp,” Romo said.

Dallas certainly needs better protection for its quarterbacks after Cincinnati had five sacks, including two by linebacker Michael Johnson.

The Bengals made plenty of offseason news with the additions of Owens and Pacman Jones, who was not signed by any team last year because of his previous off-field issues and missed the season. Neither former Cowboy had much impact, although Owens caught two passes for 18 yards and was Carson Palmer’s target with four passes.

Buehler added field goals of 34 yards in the second quarter and 23 yards in the third. The last kick was set up when linebacker Brandon Williams returned an interception of Jordan Palmer — Carson’s younger brother and Cincinnati’s third-string quarterback — 36 yards to the Bengals’ 9.

Dallas capped the one-sided victory when Brandon Sharpe picked off Jordan Palmer’s fourth-quarter pass and dived untouched into the end zone for a 6-yard score.


The Denver Broncos’ top draft pick, Demaryius Thomas, apparently injured his left foot Saturday night – the same one he broke in pre-draft workouts – and underwent further medical tests Sunday. A person with knowledge of the diagnosis said Thomas wasn’t seriously injured and wouldn’t be out long term. … New Orleans businessman Dave Dixon, who fought to bring an NFL team to New Orleans in the 1960s and was a driving force behind building the Louisiana Superdome in the 1970s, has died at age 87. … Indianapolis police arrested second-year Colts defensive lineman John Gill for public intoxication after finding him passed out in a ditch on the side of a road about 4 a.m. EDT on Sunday. … Veteran linebacker and special-teams standout Tony Gilbert signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars, where he played from 2003-07. … The Oakland Raiders signed free-agent quarterback Colt Brennan, who was cut by Washington on Monday. … Atlanta Falcons veteran wide receiver Michael Jenkins will miss four to six weeks with a right-shoulder injury.