Buffalo Bills kicker Tyler Bass missed a game-tying kick late in the fourth quarter that led the Kansas City Chiefs to a 27-24 victory on the road.
The Chiefs will head to the AFC Championship Game for the fifth straight season, this time to face the No. 1-seeded Baltimore Ravens next week.
Josh Allen led the Bills down the field to the point where it looked like he could kill clock and score a touchdown to take the outright lead. However, the Chiefs’ defense came up clutch on third-and-9, forcing an incompletion that led Bass out on the field to attempt a 44-yard field goal.
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When the kick went up, it was in line with the right goal post, but quickly made a right-hand turn for the miss. The home Bills fans couldn’t believe it, as the Chiefs ran the clock out to move on.
The third chapter of the Allen-Patrick Mahomes postseason parlay saw yet another battle of brilliant quarterback performance. And because of that, there weren’t many punts in this game as both teams were going back and forth to put points on the board.
After both started with field goal drives, it was Allen and James Cook establishing the run game for Buffalo. It came down to second-and-3 from Kansas City’s 5-yard line, where Allen scampered into the end zone for the first touchdown of the game.
The Chiefs responded with a field goal on the ensuing drive, but after getting a Bills punt, Mahomes had the chance to take the first lead of the game on the road.
He needed just five plays to do so, and who better than star tight end Travis Kelce getting his first touchdown since Week 11 of the regular season for a 22-yard score where he was wide open down the left sideline.
But both Allen and Kelce weren’t done making an impact for their teams in this game, as they’d get their second touchdowns the next time each team saw the end zone.
First, it was Allen busting his way through tackler from two yards out to score before the first half ended, making it a 17-13 game.
Then, it was Kelce getting in once again to start the second half, but this one wasn’t easy. He caught a screen from Mahomes and used some blocking to run three yards and get over the goal line.
There were five total touchdowns with a kneeldown to end the first half in between that saw multiple lead changes in a game that had everyone watching in the stands and at home on the edge of their seats.
After Kelce got in for the second time, the Bills took 15 plays to go 75 yards, killing 8:25 of clock, to get their lead back thanks to a seed from Allen to Khalil Shakir. The speedy wideout, who has become a kind of security blanket for Allen in the pass game, made a tremendous catch near the front left pylon, while keeping his feet inbounds for the score.
Now, 24-20, everyone had the feeling Mahomes was just going to fire back with a touchdown of his own. He did just that, orchestrating a drive that ended with Isiah Pacheco getting into the end zone again this postseason.
With both offenses playing so well, defenses knew that one stop could be the decisive factor in the game. The Chiefs got that when the Bills turned it over on downs after trying a fake punt with Damar Hamlin on fourth-and-five on their own 30-yard line.
The Chiefs got right into red zone territory with a Rashee Rice reception, but on the very next play, momentum once again shifted back to the Bills.
Mecole Hardman got a run to the left side, and he tried extending the ball over the goal line to give the Chiefs a more sizable lead. But Buffalo safety Jordan Poyer, their trusty captain on defense, got the ball out of his hands before he could do it.
The fumble ended up going out of bounds in the end zone, which forced a controversial rule to be called: Touchback with change of possession.
Nothing came of the drive, but the Bills were able to make the Chiefs punt as well, giving them a chance to at least tie it in the fourth quarter.
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