A shocking call came from the Buffalo Bills in their AFC Divisional Game against the Kansas City Chiefs, as Damar Hamlin tried to pick up a first down on a fake punt, but failed.
It’s a play call that many shook their heads at, including Chiefs star tight end Travis Kelce.
The call came with the Bills on their own 30-yard line, where punting the ball away was the surefire call. Instead, Buffalo tried to pull a fast one on fourth-and-five, with Hamlin taking a direct snap and trying to run for it.
The Chiefs snuffed it out quickly, though, and got the ball back with tremendous field position.
“Initially, I’m like, ‘What in the f— are they doing?'” Kelce said on his “New Heights” podcast with his older brother, Jason Kelce. “Fourth-and-five in your own territory at that point in the game, that’s not your fake call right there, especially in the playoffs, where everything is on the line.”
Kelce believes that the special teams unit saw the Chiefs only had 10 guys on the field, and checked into the fake punt.
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“I think there had to have been a check,” Kelce explained. “Our punt return team only had 10 guys out on the field. With that being said, I think some teams and some coaches might have an automatic audible. If they’re missing a guy, take advantage of that. Go to whatever side has the least amount of guys, and just run an outside sweep and hope your guys can get a body on a body.”
Of course, Kelce wasn’t complaining about that. He already had a touchdown in the game, and at that point, the Chiefs only held a three-point lead.
Luckily for the Bills, though, the turnover on downs didn’t hurt them in the end due to a Chiefs turnover. Mecole Hardman fumbled the ball while reaching for the goal line on the second play of the ensuing drive. Bills safety Jordan Poyer got the ball out of his hands and it went out of bounds in the end zone.
The result was a touchback, giving the Bills the ball back while letting out a huge sigh of relief.
But Buffalo wasn’t able to capitalize on the Chiefs not scoring on two separate drives, including the final one where kicker Tyler Bass shanked a 44-yard field goal that could’ve sent the game to overtime.
Despite solid play by Bills quarterback Josh Allen, it wasn’t enough to take down Kelce, Patrick Mahomes and the rest of the Chiefs’ roster that has stymied any playoff run for Buffalo in recent seasons.
Kelce & Co. are heading to their sixth straight AFC Championship Game this weekend, while the Bills head to the offseason to once again figure out how to get back to the Super Bowl next season.
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