NFL Overtime Rules Once Again Under Fire Following Chiefs-Bills Thriller

by Josh Lanier
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One of the most exciting games of football ever played ended on a coin toss. The Chiefs’ 42-36 win over the Buffalo Bills Sunday night was a thrilling back-and-forth showdown between two of the league’s best quarterbacks that could have been even better if not for the NFL’s overtime rules. Now, fans are demanding a change.

The final two minutes of Sunday’s AFC Divisional Playoff game was nothing short of incredible. Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and Bills’ signal-caller Josh Allen competed in a game of “anything you can do I can do better.” They combined for three touchdowns in the waning moments of the game, with each score seeming to be the final nail in the coffin for their opponent. But like zombies, both teams refused to die.

The game appeared over when Allen scored his fourth touchdown of the game with only 13 seconds left in regulation to give his team a three-point lead. But that’s an eternity for someone like Mahomes who can cook minute rice in 13 seconds. He moved his team 44 yards in 10 seconds to set up a field goal that sent the game into overtime.

And this is where Josh Allen committed his only mistake Sunday night. He called tails on the coin flip to see who would get the ball first in overtime. It landed on heads, and Kansas City elected to receive the kickoff.

In the NFL’s overtime rules, if the team with first possession scores a touchdown the game is over. The Bills needed to hold the Chiefs to a field goal or force a turnover or punt to get possession. That didn’t happen.

Mahomes hit tight end Travis Kelce for an eight-yard touchdown four minutes into overtime. Josh Allen and his high-powered offense never touched the ball. The Bills Mafia felt robbed, and most football fans felt cheated out of a better ending.

Fans Call For New Overtime Rules

Only minutes after the AFC Divisional Playoff game ended, “overtime” began to trend on Twitter. Most fans — excluding Chiefs fans, of course — hated the ending and wanted to see the Bills get a rebuttal.

“The overtime rule for playoff games must change. If this one doesn’t spark a more fair approach nothing ever will,” Pro Football Talk tweeted.

“Both football games were 10/10 today, NFL overtime rules are terrible, end of story,” someone else posted.

“Each team should get a possession in overtime. Never understood why the rules have always said otherwise,” George Conway tweeted.

Most people wanted the NFL to allow the teams to play the entire 15-minute extra period. The team with the highest score at the end wins.

Ironically, one person who didn’t complain about the NFL’s overtime rules is Bills quarterback Josh Allen.

“The rules are what they are. I can’t complain about that because if it was the other way around, we’d be celebrating too,” Allen said. “It is what it is at this point. We just didn’t make enough plays tonight.”

The Chiefs will play the Bengals next week in the AFC title game for a chance to return to the Super Bowl. The Bills will return to New York and work on their “call it” skills for next year.

Outsider.com