The Kansas City Chiefs shockingly fell as six-point favorites to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday Night Football in Week 13. The biggest takeaway from the game was a missed pass interference call that could have swung the game in favor of the Chiefs. But that was not the biggest takeaway for LA Chargers fans.
Instead, Chargers fans were infatuated with the fact that prior to the non-pass interference call, Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs benefited from an unnecessary roughness penalty that should have never been called.
Mahomes was lit up on the sideline and while it was a hard hit, Mahomes was still in bounds so by rule, the hit was legal. The defender did not even lead with his helmet. It was a completely legal hit, but because it was hard and it was Mahomes, it was called a penalty.
It is always frustrating for a Chargers fan to see the Chiefs benefit from a call that should have never happened, especially as they are becoming this generation's New England Patriots. It is even more frustrating, though, when Justin Herbert was hit with a much more illegal hit the previous week on Sunday Night Football and no flag was thrown at all.
In fact, the Chargers actually ended up getting penalized after the hit as the offensive line rightfully went to defend their quarterback.
NFL refs prove a bias for Patrick Mahomes that the Chargers don't get with Justin Herbert
Maybe we can give the officiating crew the benefit of the doubt. The late hit on Herbert was so obviously a penalty and there was backlash that it was not called. With that in mind, the refs might have been more whistle-happy with a similar play to avoid the same backlash.
But by definition, these two plays are completely different. Herbert was firmly out of bounds with most of his body off the playing field. There is no disputing that. Mahomes, meanwhile, was very obviously still in bounds when he got hit hard. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that one out.
It is already hard enough to beat the Chiefs, especially when the Chargers aren't getting the best guidance from the coaching staff. It is nearly impossible to beat them when they have the favor of the officiating crew, which has so often been the case.
If anything, the missed pass interference call was a make-up call for giving the Chiefs 15 free yards earlier in the drive. But of course, because one call out of dozens doesn't go the Chiefs' way, there is outrage.