The NFL Divisional Playoff weekend was filled with extremely competitive and exciting games to watch.
Each game was decided at the very end; a clear-cut winner could not be predicted.
This is particularly true with the Sunday evening game between the Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs.
Two young quarterbacks went toe to toe in the final two minutes of the game to end regulation with a tie.
Then, overtime began.
This is where fans were not happy with the rules.
NFL Overtime Rules
We need to change the Senate rules and the NFL overtime rules.
— Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta (@malcolmkenyatta) January 24, 2022
The winner of the coin toss gets the ball first in overtime.
If that team scores a touchdown, the game is over.
Scoring a field goal or not scoring at all means the game continues, and the other team takes possession.
At that point, the first team to score points wins the game.
With that being said, the coin toss is critical, and the team that wins the toss is the winner 52.8 percent of the time with a record of 86-67-10.
In playoff situations, it is more one-sided.
Only one team who won the toss in the playoffs lost the game; the overall record is 10-1 for the coin toss winner.
If you're arguing with a friend about the current @NFL overtime format today:
*Teams that win the OT coin toss (inc. playoffs) are 86-67-10 (won 52.8%)
*BUT, in the playoffs, teams that win the toss are 10-1@NFLResearch
— Andrew Siciliano (@AndrewSiciliano) January 24, 2022
What Happened In Bills Vs. Chiefs Game
Kansas City, of course, won the toss, received the ball, and scored a touchdown to end the game.
Josh Allen and the Bills did not get the ball in overtime.
FS1’s Emmanuel Acho made a great argument about how the NFL goes out of its way to create parity and fair competition among teams.
Two examples include establishing a uniform salary cap and alternating kicking and receiving at the beginning of the games and after halftime.
However, the current overtime rule undermines all of this with a coin toss.
You should demand the @NFL change the overtime rule immediately, before it costs your team.
It cost the Falcons a Super Bowl in 2016.
The Chiefs in the 2018 AFCCG.
And it will cost you favorite team next.
— Emmanuel Acho (@EmmanuelAcho) January 24, 2022
Rules Have Hurt Other Teams In The Past
Acho pointed out that the rule has hurt other teams besides Buffalo, and it will wreak havoc again if it is not changed.
Don’t let last night’s ending to the Chiefs win take away the fact the exact same thing happened for Tom Brady in Super Bowl LI – with the season MVP (Matt Ryan) never getting on the field in overtime – and nobody yelled as loud for OT rule changes as everybody is doing today!
— Jason Elmquist (@jelmquistSW) January 24, 2022
The Chiefs lost to the Patriots in the 2019 AFC Championship in a similar manner.
The same people (CHIEFS Fans) not upset over the NFL rules……
— John Duke Brady (@dizzleforizzle) January 24, 2022
Ironically, the Chiefs proposed a rule change after that game so that both teams would be guaranteed an overtime possession.
The change was not accepted.
In 2019, after losing to the Patriots in the AFC Championship, the Chiefs proposed a rule that would guarantee both teams a possession in overtime.
It wasn't approved and we know what happened next. pic.twitter.com/nxPJyfCC3u
— ESPN (@espn) January 24, 2022
Because the Chiefs have now experienced both possibilities with this rule, no one can blame them for being jubilant in victory last night.
Josh Allen’s Response
Allen was directly affected by the rule in Sunday’s game yet he does not take issue with the way it works.
“I can’t complain about that. If it was the other way around, we’d be celebrating too.”
Josh Allen weighs in on the NFL overtime rules debate pic.twitter.com/oM69oNQ0KZ
— Pickswise (@Pickswise) January 24, 2022
That is a mature and commendable attitude given how disappointing this loss must be for Allen and the Bills.
One thing is certain; we can expect more debate about this rule if it is not addressed or changed in the offseason.