Did This Outdated NFL Rule Cost the Buffalo Bills a Super Bowl?
The Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs scored a combined 25 points in the final 1:54 of regulation last night.
That's an NFL record.
The last two minutes of regulation put an exclamation point at the end of what was already an instant classic. It was the rematch of two teams who had met the year before in the AFC Title game, both with more than enough talent and poise to hoist the Lombardi Trophy next month. It was the rematch of two MVP-caliber quarterbacks, both of whom are looking to stake their claim as the next "GOAT" under center.
The Bills drove down the field in what felt like seconds to re-take the lead, and in just 13 seconds, the Chiefs got into field goal range, and Harrison Butker tied the game again.
The game advanced to overtime, and thanks to an outdated, archaic rule that the NFL still uses to this day, we were robbed of the full potential for what this game could've been.
The Buffalo Bills are Not Without Fault
Now, don't get me wrong. There were a number of reasons why the Buffalo Bills ultimately lost this game. The inability to get Devin Singletary going as the lead running back. Stefon Diggs recording a whopping three catches for seven yards on six targets.
Oh yeah, and allowing the Chiefs to go 44 yards in 10 seconds to set up the game-tying field goals. Chunk plays of 19 and 25 yards to Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce often don't help the cause, especially when you inexplicably rush four defenders at Mahomes on both plays.
The Bills didn't play a perfect game like they did against the Patriots. They did, however, deserve a shot to win, or at least tie, the game in overtime. And yet, Josh Allen remained on the bench, and watched helplessly as his team's season came to an end.
The NFL Desperately Needs to Modernize Their Overtime Rules
I'm not a Bills fan, so I can make the following statement without fear of "homer" judgement. The NFL's overtime rules are outdated, and in last night's case, kept the sport from reaching its full entertainment potential.
It's time that the NFL adopts overtime rules similar to those adopted by college football this season. Allow me to present to you my proposal for the rules of overtime in the playoffs in the NFL.
- As is customary in college football, the coin toss remains, but each team gets one offensive possession, regardless of what happens on the first possession.
- You have the option to adopt the two-point conversion rule that college football employs, in which after the first overtime period (the completion of one drive per team), teams must make a two-point conversion after scoring a touchdown in overtime. You can adopt that, or keep going with traditional extra points.
- NO TWO-POINT CONVERSION SHOOTOUT. THE GAME CONTINUES UNTIL WE HAVE A WINNER.
Number three is really the hill I intend to die on in this argument. Much like *checks notes* every other professional league, it's sudden death. We play until there is one winner and one loser, and both teams are afforded at least one opportunity to possess the ball on offense.
Right now, one fanbase (the Bills) is livid, one fanbase is elated, and the rest are somewhat disappointed that the game had to end when it did. Wouldn't a change make sense?