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The New England Patriots and Las Vegas Raiders were poised to go to overtime. With three seconds left on the clock, the score tied, and the ball on their own 45, the Patriots handed off to Rhamondre Stevenson.
He rumbled ahead for about 20 yards as the final seconds ticked off the clock. Instead of going down, though, Stevenson lateraled the ball to wide receiver Jakobi Meyers. Myers, for some reason, started running backward.
Then, inconceivably, he heaved the ball backward towards Mac Jones. This would have made sense if the Patriots were trailing. At that point, Meyers should have done everything in his power to keep the ball alive.
BUT THE SCORE WAS TIED. All they had to do was go down and overtime was coming.
But Meyers’ boneheaded decision to chuck the ball backward backfired in the most incredible way.
Jakobi Meyers threw the ball right to Raiders defender Chandler Jones, a former Patriot, who had no one to beat except quarterback Mac Jones, who was no match for his namesake.
What did the Patriots just do?
It could be argued that New England should have never been in this position in the first place. The Raiders tied the score on a controversial touchdown pass from Derek Carr to Keelan Cole Sr.
The referees said there wasn’t enough evidence to overturn the call on the field — which was touchdown — despite it certainly appearing that Cole stepped out of bounds.
It’s very uncommon that a Bill Belichick team would appear to be so poorly coached, but Meyers clearly did not understand the situation.
It was the second time in the game that New England appeared completely out of sorts. Earlier, the Patriots had a punt blocked when their team wasn’t ready for the snap.
For the Raiders, they stave off complete embarrassment. Las Vegas set an NFL record in Week 14 becoming the first team in league history to blow FOUR double-digit, second half leads.
In this game, thanks to the blocked punt fiasco, the Raiders took a 17-3 lead to the half. They blew that lead, again, and probably should have lost. But the Cole touchdown followed by the Meyers brain fart saved them.
And maybe saved Josh McDaniels’ job, too.
McDaniels, by the way, is 2-0 head-to-head against Bill Belichick.
We thought we had seen it all after the Colts unbelievable meltdown Saturday against the Vikings, but Meyers may have let the Colts off the hook with one of the worst plays in recent football memory.
Football is so fun.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @OutkickDanZ