Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid retains faith in Kadarius Toney despite an offside call against the wide receiver costing his team a go-ahead touchdown in Sunday’s dramatic defeat against the Buffalo Bills.
Toney thought he had scored the winning touchdown with just over a minute to play in Sunday’s game, waltzing into the end zone upon receiving a lateral from Travis Kelce after the tight end caught Patrick Mahomes’ pass.
The Chiefs’ joy, however, was short-lived as Toney was flagged for the most marginal of offside calls, meaning the Bills inflicted Kansas City’s fifth defeat of the season by a score of 20-17.
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Mahomes had to be restrained from confronting the officials after the loss, saying he was “lost for words” and questioning why Toney was not warned about his positioning ahead of the play.
The Super Bowl LVII champions are now 8-5 after losing four of their last six games, a run which has seen them lose ground on the Baltimore Ravens and Miami Dolphins in the race for the AFC’s top seed.
Next up for the Chiefs is a road game against the New England Patriots on Sunday, and coach Reid plans to stick with Toney despite his costly mistake last time out.
“The thing I know is he makes plays,” Reid said of Toney on Monday.
“He makes plays when he has the ball in his hands and that’s important. He’s a young guy. He doesn’t have a ton of experience, but I think he’s getting better every week.
“I don’t see that as being a negative. I look at the things that he produced on, too.”
— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) December 11, 2023
Regarding the offside call, Reid explained Toney is used to checking his positioning with the officials prior to plays, saying a lack of communication was his only complaint.
Reid said: “Normally he looks over to the sideline and just gets an okay, on that one, he just happened not to.
“Just make sure you check, make sure you check with the guy on the side just to see if you’re aligned. He was two inches away, or an inch, from being legal.
“I think I’ve got a good relationship with the officials, and I had no communication. That’s really where I was coming from. I was disappointed in that part.
“We put so much time and effort into it, both physical and mental effort. For it to come down to something like that, that ends up being the frustration.
“That type of situation is too great for two really good football teams playing each other, when you’re down to a minute or 50 seconds, all of a sudden, you’re right there and have a big play. I think anybody would say that’s a little bit frustrating.”