The Broncos could have easily played it safe, and walked out of their own stadium with a tie last night.
But Gary Kubiak was willing to risk a loss to try for the win.
One of today’s most-second-guessed calls is going to be his decision to let kicker Brandon McManus try a 62-yard field goal with a minute and eight seconds left in overtime, which could have won the game. Of course, the ensuing miss gave the Chiefs field position and enough time to get their own game-winner from kicker Cairo Santos.
“My thing is that we’re going to try to win around here,” Kubiak said in comments distributed by the team. “I made that decision and it just didn’t work out. I have a lot of confidence in Brandon. I have a lot of confidence in our football team. That’s why I made that decision. . . .
“It was very tough. The fact that we had no timeouts made me want to go in that direction. If you did have your timeouts maybe you think about punting it down there and see if you can get the ball back. I don’t know. We’re going to try to win. I’ve seen ‘B-Mac’ do that many times in practice. It’s on me. I just gave them a chance. I thought we could do it and we didn’t get it done. Give them credit.”
McManus said before the game his range was around 60, and the wind had died down early this morning when it turned to overtime. His long field goal this season was 55 yards and his career long was 57, but kickers often find extra distance at altitude and in pressure situations. Then again, maybe he already has, and Kubiak was pushing him beyond range out of sheer hope.
Of course, the thing Kubiak could have done rather than kick or punt was to leave his offense on the field and try to get a first down. Quarterback Trevor Siemian was playing efficiently in the second half, and their chances at that might not have been much worse. Even an incomplete pass would have saved them 8 yards of field position, and there’s a chance they could have made the Chiefs go even farther with the clock ticking, which hasn’t been their specialty.