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Romo opened the scoring by connecting with Dez Bryant in the end zone near the right sideline on third-and-8 from the Redskins‘ 22. He found the soft spot in Washington’s cover-2 zone. Hall and Atogwe trailed the play.

“Everybody else played the defense the way they were coached, and I had some bad technique that cost us,” Atogwe said.

Romo struck another blow with the score 17-17 and less than nine minutes remaining in regulation. On third-and-8 from Dallas’ 41, he spun to his left, turning his back to the line of scrimmage, to escape Orakpo’s pass rush.

Meanwhile, the Redskins blew coverage of tight end Jason Witten. Romo exploited it by hitting Witten in stride out in front of rookie safety DeJon Gomes for a touchdown.

“It was cover-2 zone, and somebody dropped him,” Hall said. “Somebody should have been running with him through the whole course of the play.”

Romo delivered his final dagger in overtime after Gano missed a chance to win it. On third-and-15 from Washington’s 49, the Redskins showed an all-out blitz, just as they did on the decisive third-and-21 play in these teams’ first meeting in September.

Atogwe dropped out of the blitz and tried to help Hall underneath in covering Bryant, but neither matched Bryant’s out cut. The 26-yard completion extended the drive and positioned Dallas for the winning kick.

“I slipped,” Hall said. “Can’t slip. I’m the reason we lost the game. It’s frustrating. It’s tough to swallow. Second time in a row to Dallas.”

Hall, who represented the Redskins in the Pro Bowl last season, went on to excoriate himself.

“The way I’m playing right now, they need to go cut me because I’m definitely not worth what I’m getting,” he said. “It’s frustrating. Hopefully they see something in me and they bring me back next year, but the way things are going right now, I’m definitely not playing up to par.”

Neither are his teammates, though. The canteen of water remains beyond their grasp.

“We’ve just got to keep playing hard and things will fall in our place, but right now we just can’t get any breaks,” Orakpo said. “It’s hard, man, because you’ve got a lot of guys fighting, trying to do something to make that big play. It’s just frustrating.”