Chiefs Proposing OT Rule Change to Give Both Teams Ball After AFC Title Loss

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistMarch 1, 2019

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - JANUARY 20:  Rex Burkhead #34 of the New England Patriots celebrates with James Develin #46 after scoring the game-winning touchdown to defeat the Kansas City Chiefs in overtime during the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 20, 2019 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Patriots defeated the Chiefs 37-31. (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)
David Eulitt/Getty Images

After seeing their season come to an end last season with NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes on the sidelines, the Kansas City Chiefs are seeking change to the league's overtime rules.

Kansas City general manager Brett Veach revealed on PFT Live on Friday that Chiefs coach Andy Reid is preparing to make a proposal to the NFL that would guarantee each team at least one possession in overtime moving forward.

"Coach is working on that," Veach said (h/t Pro Football Talk's Michael David Smith). "I think everybody wants a chance for guys to do what they do. I don't really see the downside of having that. Especially when you have a player like Pat Mahomes. It would have been a lot of fun. I think people, if they weren't already tuned in for a great game, would have turned on that overtime."

In 2010, the league passed a rule that prevented teams from ending a game by kicking a field goal on the first possession of overtime. If a team manages a field goal on the opening possession of overtime, the opposing team receives the ball with a chance to extend the game with a field goal or win the game with a touchdown.

A touchdown on the first possession of overtime still prevents the other team from ever getting the ball, though.

That rule change initially only applied to postseason games but eventually made its way into the regular season as well. And while that tweak appeared to be an improvement over the previous format, there are still calls for an overtime overhaul.

The 2019 AFC Championship Game only generated even more noise.

The visiting New England Patriots won the overtime coin toss, and future Hall of Famer Tom Brady led the Patriots to an opening-drive touchdown, preventing Mahomes and the Chiefs offense from ever seeing the field.

While the loss stings, Chiefs owner Clark Hunt told the Kansas City Star's Brooke Pryor last month that he believes some good can come from the game, if the league continues to adapt:

"The league made a change a couple years ago where we went away from letting teams win with a field goal on the first possession. I think that was a really good change—until you have an experience like we did in the AFC Championship Game where we didn’t get a chance to possess the ball, it wasn't something I’d really thought about.

"But I would be open to at least a discussion about changing the rules in the playoffs where maybe you play a full quarter and let the game be settled just like it would be at the end of the fourth quarter in a normal game. And if it's still tied, then you could go to some kind of sudden death after that. I think that might be a more equitable way to approach it.

"And certainly a game like ours has a chance for being a catalyst to that discussion, which is a positive."

Player safety will always be the No. 1 argument for not adapting a college football-style overtime. There are also those who believe if neither team can take care of business in the first 60 minutes, sudden death is a fair format.

For now, Reid and the Chiefs will continue to work on trying to create a proposal that could help teams avoid the type of heartbreaking loss they suffered earlier this year.

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