With less than 5 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, it appeared as though the Indianapolis Colts were set to punt against the Kansas City Chiefs. At the time, the Colts trailed by 4.
But instead of the fourth-and-6, the Colts earned a first down because of an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty called on Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones. With the fresh set of downs, the Colts managed to drive down the rest of the field for the game-winning touchdown.
CBS cameras caught Jones’ face mask up against Ryan’s after the Chiefs forced the fourth down on the drive. Jones said something to Ryan, but it wasn’t clear exactly what on the broadcast.
During his postgame press conference, Ryan reportedly said he heard what Jones said to draw the penalty but was unwilling to share what it was to the media. However, Ryan did have a message for Jones.
“Sometimes, you gotta keep your cool,” said Ryan.
Ryan Keeps His Cool on Game-Winning Drive
The 15-year veteran quarterback knows a thing or two about keeping cool. How else would he have earned the nickname Matty Ice?
Ryan only averaged 6.0 yards per pass and took 5 sacks for the second straight week. He also lost a fumble in the first half. But he saved his best for the final drive of the afternoon.
After the Jones penalty, Ryan went 6 for 7 with 50 passing yards and a touchdown. The score was a 12-yard pass to rookie tight end Jelani Woods.
Ryan also completed 2 passes for 6 yards on the final drive before the Jones penalty. Furthermore, he converted a fourth-and-1 on a quarterback sneak.
It was Ryan’s 43rd career fourth-quarterback comeback. He owns the most fourth-quarterback comebacks in the NFL since coming into the league in 2008.
That clutch play is exactly why the Colts traded for Ryan during the offseason.
Jones Takes Responsibility for Penalty
The Chiefs defensive tackle explained to the media after the game that he thought he was just having a conversation with Ryan and added that he “didn’t think he said anything horrendous.” But Jones also took responsibility for the penalty.
“I blame myself for that. It was third down, we got off the field, defense fought hard. And I kind of put us in the situation to get back on the field, and then we got scored on. And that sums up the game,” Jones told the media after the game. “I’ll take that one, it was my fault. It was definitely my fault. As a veteran player on this team, I got to be better with those types of things, especially with those situations.
“But it won’t happen again for me. I’ll take full blame. Apologize to my team for putting us in that type of situation.”
The penalty could have been the difference between winning or losing on September 25. For the Colts, it could become an important early turning point to the 2022 season.
Indianapolis was trying to avoid a winless first 3 games as it had last year under quarterback Carson Wentz. The Colts turned around their 2021 season in October, but a late collapse, in combination with the early hole, proved to be too much to overcome for a playoff spot.
With the 20-17 win against the Chiefs, the Colts improved to 1-1-1. The two times the team has made the postseason with Frank Reich as head coach, the Colts began 2-1 and 1-2.