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On This Date in Sports November 26, 1981: Carano to the Rescue

In collaboration with the Sportsecyclopedia.com

The Dallas Cowboys edge the Chicago Bears on Thanksgiving 10-9. The Cowboys were 13-point favorites but were trailing 9-3 in the fourth quarter after losing quarterback Danny White to a rib injury. Glen Carano, a backup who had previously only seen mop-up duty, came on in relief. After struggling most of the game, Carano led the Cowboys on a game-winning drive later in the fourth quarter. The drive was capped by a six-yard touchdown run by Ron Springs, as Carano completed 6-of-15 passes for 131 yards. 

After losing to the Philadelphia Eagles in the 1980 NFC Championship Game, the Dallas Cowboys were again one of the top teams in the NFC. Through 12 weeks, the Cowboys were 9-3, while the Bears went into Thanksgiving in last place with a record of 3-9 for Neil Armstrong. Danny White was having a career season for the Cowboys and in the discussion for MVP. 

Dallas took the lead in the first quarter with a 41-yard field goal by Rafael Septien. Things turned on the Cowboys in the second quarter as Danny White was hit hard by Gary Fencik fumbling while suffering a rib cage injury. The Bears would tie the game on a 43-yard field goal by John Roveto. In the third quarter, the Bears took the lead on a two-yard quarterback sneak by Vince Evans. Roveto missed the extra point as Chicago held a 9-3 lead as the fourth quarter began. 

Glenn Carano found his stride in the fourth quarter, leading Dallas on a game-winning drive, as Ron Springs scored on a six-yard run. Rafael Septien would hit the PAT, giving Dallas a 10-9 win. Glenn Carano was serviceable, passing for 131 yards without an interception. 

Glenn Carano was born on November 18, 1955, in San Pedro, California. After playing at UNLV, he was taken in the second round of the 1977 NFL Draft by the Cowboys. Over the next five years, Carano played sporadically, first serving as a third-string quarterback. He had his first two touchdowns in 1980. A week after the Thanksgiving win, Glenn Carano led Dallas to a 37-13 win over the Baltimore Colts in his only career start in the NFL. Carano had a touchdown and an interception while completing 7-of-18 passes for 51 yards. It would be the only start of Glenn Carano's career. Carano later went on to play with the Pittsburgh Maulers in the USFL before retiring from football. He is the father of Gia Carano, a former Mixed Martial Arts fighter who became an actress, starring in Deadpool and The Mandalorian.