HomeNFLChiefs stymied by refs: Not what we want for NFL

Chiefs stymied by refs: Not what we want for NFL

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For a second straight week, a frustrated Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs were left “talking about the refs,” this time after an offside penalty call on wide receiver Kadarius Toney negated would have been an epic finish versus the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

The penalty wiped out a 49-yard touchdown that featured a cross-field lateral from tight end Travis Kelce to Toney. The play would have given the Chiefs the lead with just more than a minute remaining.

Instead, they wound up turning the ball over on downs after the penalty and lost 20-17 for their second straight defeat.

Mahomes said a receiver is usually warned before given an offside penalty. He said Toney was never warned.

“I’ve played seven years [and] never had offensive offside called,” Mahomes said. “That’s elementary school [stuff] we’re talking about. There was no warning throughout the entire game. Then you wait until there’s a minute left in the game to make a call like that? It’s tough. Lost for words. It’s tough. Regardless if we win or lose, just the end of another game and we’re talking about the refs. It’s just not what we want for the NFL and for football.

“What you want as a competitor is you practice all week to go out there and try to win, and you want it to be about your team and that team and see what happens. You don’t want to be talking about this stuff after the game. I’m not worried about if there was a flag on the next player or whatever, not a flag. I want to go out there and play and then see what happens at the end, see what the score is, and then I can live with the results.”

Mahomes was visibility heated on the sidelines, yelling at the officials about the call as the Bills wound down the clock after taking the ball back. He said he asked three different officials about the call and never received a response.

In a pool report, referee Carl Cheffers said down judge Mike Carr saw Toney lined up offside.

“Ultimately, they are responsible for wherever they line up,” Cheffers said. “No warning is required, especially if they are lined up so far offsides where they’re actually blocking our view of the ball.

“We would give them a warning if it was anywhere close, but this particular one is beyond a warning.”

Chiefs coach Andy Reid, also noting that neither he nor any of the Chiefs receivers were warned about any one of their players being offside, said the penalty call was “a bit embarrassing in the National Football League for that to take place.”

Officiating was also a topic in the Chiefs locker room after last week’s 27-19 loss at the Green Bay Packers, as an apparent pass interference penalty on a defender covering Kansas City wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling in the game’s final moments wasn’t called.

“For a guy like Travis to make a play like that … who knows if we win, but I know as fans you want to see the guys on the field decide the game, and that’s why last week I didn’t say anything about the flag,” Reid said Sunday. “They didn’t make the call on Marquez. They’re human. They make mistakes, but every week we’re talking about something.”

Still, Mahomes called the play made by Kelce “a legendary moment.”

“That’s something that only a couple of people in this world would even think about doing,” he said. “For him to make that play in that moment, making the catch, making a couple dudes miss and throwing the ball across the field to another guy and scoring a touchdown in that moment, I hope they still show it whenever he goes into the Hall of Fame, because that’s a legendary moment that we didn’t get to really witness.”

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