Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) looks to pass under pressure in the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016, in Arlington , Texas. (AP Photo/Tim Sharp)

Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) looks to pass under pressure in the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016, in Arlington , Texas. (AP Photo/Tim Sharp)

Kirk Cousins tossed three touchdowns to lead the Washington NFL team to a 34-23 win over the Dallas Cowboys in the 2015-’16 regular season finale on Jan. 3 in Arlington, Texas. The win marked the fourth straight for Washington (9-7 overall), who clinched a wildcard seed in the NFC playoff tournament last week.

Washington controlled the contest from the very start, leaping out to a 21-0 lead over Dallas in the opening quarter. Cousins scored all three of his touchdowns in the first quarter then was benched shortly afterwards to safeguard him from any potential injuries. Cousins had completed 12 of 15 pass attempts for 176 passing yards at the time of his departure from the game.

Washington Redskins running back Alfred Morris (46) is unable to break out of the end zone as Dallas Cowboys’ J.J. Wilcox (27) and Demarcus Lawrence (90) help tackle Morris for a safety in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

With Cousins resting for the playoffs, Washington inserted backup quarterback Colt McCoy, who hadn’t seen consistent action on the field since the 2014 season. Dallas took advantage and cut Washington’s lead to 24-14 at halftime. The Cowboys later trailed only 27-14 early in the fourth quarter, but McCoy then put the game out of reach with a 71-yard touchdown pass, extending Washington’s lead to 34-14. McCoy finished the game with six of 10 passes completed for 118 yards.

With a 20-point lead, Washington then relied on veteran running back Alfred Morris to burn the clock out; he ran 19 times for 100 yards.

Cowboys quarterback Kellen Moore scored two touchdowns late in the fourth quarter, but it was too late to make a comeback for a victory. Moore recorded 406 passing yards.

Next: Washington will take the No. 4 seed in the NFC playoffs and face the fifth seed, which may be either the Seattle Seahawks or the Minnesota Vikings in the divisional wild card round on Jan. 9.