Even the winning coach, Andy Reid, questions the NFL's overtime setup.
One day after Reid's Chiefs won the OT coin toss, then marched downfield for Travis Kelce's 8-yard touchdown reception to end an epic divisional-round game with the Bills, Reid recognized how fortunate Kansas City was to prevail 42-36.
"I had a chance to talk with Sean afterward," Reid said of Buffalo head coach Sean McDermott, "and that I'm sure is something they're going to look at again, too. … To make things equal, it probably needs to be able to hit both offenses, both defenses."
That didn't happen Sunday, and it has not happened much in the playoffs since the rules were adopted in 2010 for the postseason, 2012 for the regular schedule. Under those guidelines for the playoffs:
• Teams play 15-minute periods until there's a winner.
• A touchdown or safety on the first possession wins.
• If the score is tied after each team's first possession the next score will win the game.
Reid knows both sides of overtime outcomes. In the AFC title game for the 2018 season, Kansas City rallied to force the extra period, but New England won the toss, and Tom Brady marched his team downfield against a tired defense for a winning TD.
This time, Reid was in a better spot after Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen called tails and heads came up.
"We should never let a football game be determined from a coin," Buffalo left tackle Dion Dawkins said. "Like, I think that's the most craziest rule in sports. Like, you can fight your entire fight the whole game, and then the game comes down to a 50-50 chance of a coin toss. Like, this ain't Vegas. … And it's just crazy that that was the outcome."
Might changes be coming? The NFL's powerful competition committee, which makes proposals for rules changes, has gone into, well, overtime on the topic through the years. For now, though, players, coaches and fans have to live with what's on the books.
"It shouldn't be a race, like, the first guy to touch that wall wins," Dawkins said. "Like, come on now … but that's what we're dealt with now. So I don't want to make an excuse for it. But hopefully, it'll change."
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