Patrick Mahomes lost his helmet and then his cool at the referees as the Chiefs lost 20-17 to the Bills on Sunday. Having lost 27-19 to the Green Bay Packers last week, Kansas City wanted to win this came to not fall down to 8-5, which they did, and much of the reason for the loss came down to a late offside penalty.
It was a crushing way to lose any football game but it was especially more so because their opponents, who are in the same AFC conference as them, also rose to 7-6 and burnished their postseason credentials. It was all too much for Patrick Mahomes to take as he could not believe they had lost in this way and had a go at the referees.
He had to be held back by the coaching staff and teammates as he shouted at the officials and had he not been restrained, he was sure to confront them. Here is a look at what happened below.
Patrick Mahomes should look more to Kadarius Toney and not the referees for the Chiefs’ 20-17 loss to the Bills
To understand the quarterback’s frustrations, we have to look at the play again and the context. Patrick Mahomes had rallied his team from down 17-7 to tie the game. With Buffalo leading by just three points, they had the chance to throw a go-ahead touchdown. The quarterback thought he did that when he connected with Travis Kelce in the two-minute warning. The tight end avoided going down and threw a lateral to Kadarius Toney, who took it all the way to the endzone.
However, the play was called back because the scorer was lined up in the neutral zone. It was completely a self-inflicted wound and it caused the Chiefs to lose the game.
However angry Patrick Mahomes might have been, it is clear from the videos that the referees made the right call. Perhaps he was frustrated that the play was not called dead right after the snap and the referees allowed them to run the play. Had they whistled it dead right away, the quarterback might have thought of running the same play again on the next down. But he could not because the Bills had already seen it take place and were sure to be prepared for it.
He confessed as much, saying after the game,
“It’s tough to swallow. Not only from me, and football in general, to take away greatness like that, for a guy like Travis to make a play like that, you want to see the guys on the field decide the game. They’re human. They make mistakes. But every week, we’re talking about something… It’s the call.”
Patrick Mahomes felt that the Chiefs should have been warned instead of throwing the flag.
“Just in that moment. Not for myself. To have a flag change the outcome of the game. I’ve never had offensive offsides called. If it does, they warn you. There wasn’t a warning the entire game. And then you make a call like that in the final minute? Another game, we’re talking about the refs. It’s not what we want for the NFL. It’s not what we want for football.”
While that might explain his momentary outburst, he will realize, in calmer surroundings, that the two consecutive defeats are due to their offense leaving not being consistent and leaving everything to one last play. The referees are not the ones to blame in this case.