GM Brandon Beane says Buffalo Bills will learn from 'painful' season-ending loss to Kansas City Chiefs

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y -- Brandon Beane said he hasn't been able to watch the full tape of the Buffalo Bills' 42-36 overtime loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, outside of the final plays. It's just too soon, according to the Bills' general manager.

"It's painful and still going through it," Beane said during his 71-minute end-of-season news conference Wednesday. "I'm not in a good spot. But I will review it and we'll learn from it, I promise you that. There's a lot of pain in this city and there's a lot of pain in that building over there, and we're gonna do everything in our power to not let that happen again."

The divisional-round loss marked a second straight year in which the Bills' season ended against the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium; last year it was in the AFC Championship Game.

Making it even more painful this time around is that Buffalo -- after allowing Kansas City to drive down in the final 13 seconds of regulation and kick a game-tying field goal -- didn't get a chance to get the ball in overtime.

The current rules allow for the game to end with only one team having possession in OT if it scores a touchdown on the opening drive. The Chiefs got possession after winning the coin toss, and walked off with the win when Patrick Mahomes hit tight end Travis Kelce with a touchdown pass.

Since the current overtime rules in the playoffs were adopted in 2010, the team that won the coin toss has now scored a touchdown on the opening possession in seven of 11 games, per ESPN Stats & Information.

Beane said Wednesday that he would be in favor of seeing the rules revisited.

"At the end of the day, we lost the game the other night. But of course we would've loved to, I think the TV audience would've loved to have seen Josh (Allen) and our offense get it back," Beane said. "I would definitely love to see it brought back to the table.

"I'm not saying I have the exact idea, but I think there's some ways to do it. Without getting into detail, I think there's a way you can do it in the regular season that handles that, but let's do something in the postseason when it's all on the line."

Beane said he has not yet had his end-of-season meeting with coach Sean McDermott and team owners Kim and Terry Pegula, where the topic likely will come up.

Games going on for long periods of overtime in the regular season isn't necessarily practical due to the wear and tear on players' bodies, but the playoffs are different. Beane noted how in the 2018 AFC Championship Game, the current overtime rule hurt the Chiefs in their loss to the New England Patriots, and that Kansas City tried to get the rule changed that offseason.

"So maybe there ends up being more ties in the regular season, but let's make sure we give both offenses a chance when the season's on the line," Beane said.

"I'm sure even though it benefited (the Chiefs) the other night, I'm sure they would be in favor. If you've got Pat Mahomes, you're always going to want to make sure he gets the ball, and we feel the same about Josh."

With the game as close as it was and the teams seemingly more evenly matched than last year, Beane thinks the Bills are right there with the Chiefs, whom they beat in Kansas City during the regular season.

"I truly believe if we played them 10 times, it's probably 5-5. And that's my heart of hearts," Beane said. "They may think different, that's how I see it. If we had just finished that game the way we know how, we're not sitting here right now, we're preparing for another one. I think we took some steps in the right direction."

The Bills finished 11-6 in the regular season and won back-to-back AFC East titles for the first time since winning four straight from 1988-91. They were led by another strong season from Allen and had the league's No. 1 defense, which helped demolish the Patriots, 47-17, in the opening round of the playoffs.

The general manager did point out the other most painful loss of the season -- a 9-6 defeat to the Jaguars in Jacksonville -- and apologized to the fans, while thanking them for staying and showing them love, instead of booing them.

"I mean, I would have been booing us. I was booing myself," he said.

Beane and McDermott often talk about game management, and they'll need to learn from Sunday's ending -- specifically Kansas City's game-tying drive with just 13 seconds left in regulation. Beane said he would "fix it" if he could, having thought about the ending "a million times," but instead will focus on what they can take from it for the future.

"I've learned the most in my life and the most in the five years I've been the GM about the things I did wrong," Beane said. "And so we have to learn from not only this game, we got to learn from some of the games we lost in the year. Because as I said, I want to play every playoff game (at home). And you always ask yourself, 'What if Kansas City would have had to come here? What would that have been like?' The advantage to playing at home in January, coming up here in the cold, the elements, whatever it is.

"We're definitely going to look at everything that went right this year, but we're going to look hard at everything that went wrong, including the last 13 seconds."