During the Bengals’ winning drive vs. the Chiefs in the AFC championship game Sunday, Cincinnati running back Joe Mixon dropped the ball after a run and a Kansas City player picked it up. The play was not ruled a fumble, however.
It wasn’t reviewed, either, even though Chiefs coach Andy Reid asked officials to look at it. Reid said officials told him Mixon “gave himself up,” meaning they judged Mixon wasn’t advancing the ball any further, and ruled the play dead.
Joe Mixon fumbled in overtime and the Chiefs recovered. Mixon didn’t give himself up, he stumbled, stood up and dropped the ball. That’s a fumble. NFL Refs missed this one pic.twitter.com/kxtzEorVqi
— Najee Harris Fan Account (@ClaypoolSZN11) January 30, 2022
Mixon was knocked down but got back up on his own and then dropped the ball. Where things get tricky, though, is whether Mixon ran into a Chiefs player or a Bengals player before hitting the ground. Additionally, it was tough to tell whether the Chiefs made a clear and immediate recovery before the play was dead. The Bengals kicked a game-winning field goal three plays later to advance to Super Bowl 56.
Some viewers believed that Mixon appeared to not be touched by a Chiefs defender, while others questioned whether they were the only ones to notice the fumble, because it wasn’t getting much attention on the CBS broadcast.
Chiefs should have taken the FG in first half BUT….
THAT WAS A FUMBLE ON THE BENGALS LAST DRIVE! Joe Mixon tripped on his own man and wasn’t touched! No replay? pic.twitter.com/v5BLqNWRXi
— CRoyalTV (@ChrisRoyal_) January 30, 2022
Am I the only one who saw that fumble by Joe mixon? No one touched him and he gave the ball up
— Shyheim Wingate (@W1ngate) January 30, 2022
Amazing how the @NFL was just able to sweep that Joe Mixon fumble in OT under the rug. It was very clearly a fumble, but I guess we can just not call it because you missed it. Even though we have replay.
— 🌮 (@TacoSalazar) January 31, 2022
Did I miss something or did Joe Mixon just fumble and it didn’t get called?
— matt augenstein (@jeah0005) January 30, 2022