In the span of five minutes on Sunday, the Patriots saw two potential touchdowns negated by officiating.
“Refs, you suck!’’ chants echoed through Gillette Stadium after the officials missed two calls.
The first came on a pass to the Chiefs’ Travis Kelce late in the third quarter. Kelce, after making the catch, was hit by Devin McCourty and let go of the ball. Stephon Gilmore scooped the ball up and headed toward the Chiefs’ end zone before slowing down after officials whistled the play dead when Kelce hit the turf.
After a Patriots challenge, the officials reversed their call and determined that Kelce had fumbled, meaning the ball Gilmore scooped was live. Had Gilmore not let up on the play, it’s likely he would have scored, bringing the Patriots to within one score of the Chiefs with a quarter to play.
On the Patriots’ ensuing possession, quarterback Tom Brady passed to N’Keal Harry, who threaded his feet up the sideline and dove over the left pylon to get into the end zone. The call on the field was that Harry stepped out of bounds, leaving the Patriots at the 3 yard line.
The refs called this out of bounds and they didn't give the Patriots a touchdown.pic.twitter.com/UXu00NAqTA— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) December 9, 2019
The Patriots had already used both their challenges, so they couldn’t get the officials’ call reviewed, even though video replays showed Harry was not out of bounds and had scored. Brady had additional chances, but were denied and they settled for a field goal with 11 minutes to go in the fourth quarter, making the score 23-16 in favor of Kansas City.