Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Byron Pringle had the game of his life against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday night, except for one obvious problem — the Chiefs suffered their first loss of the season.
With wide receivers Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins sidelined, Pringle caught six passes on nine targets for a team-leading 103 receiving yards and his first career touchdown. Asked about his night, Pringle explained why it came with mixed emotion.
“Well, it doesn’t feel great without a W, without celebrating with my team,” said Pringle, whose previous career-high for yards was 13. “We will get back in [Monday] and get everything situated and we will win it next week.”
Pringle was on the receiving end of two of the Chiefs’ best offensive plays of the evening—first, a 27-yard touchdown pass in which quarterback Patrick Mahomes extended the play with his legs. Pringle kept running and earned his first career score as a result.
“One thing about Mahomes, you just stay alive and keep moving because he will find you,” Pringle said. “Anywhere on the field, even if he is in the stands.”
The second play was a 27-yard reception with the Chiefs facing third-and-28. Pringle nearly converted the play for a first down but came up just short of the marker.
“He stepped up,” Chiefs quarterback Mahomes said of Pringle after the game. “Kind of just falling in line when Sammy wasn’t able to be out there. He came and whenever he got his chances, he made plays. That’s what we have to do on this team no matter who is out there. Obviously, we need to get healthier, but no matter who is out there, we need to find ways to make plays and win football games.”
Pringle was already used to the adversity—having lost his rookie season to preseason hernia surgery then being briefly released earlier this season.
“I just came in with the mindset to not give up,” Pringle said. “One of the rules that (former Kansas State head coach) Bill Snyder goes by is to never give up. I just kept a positive mindset and positive energy.
“I attacked every day positive, worked hard and earned myself a spot on the roster.”
Pringle’s persistence paid dividends for the Chiefs on Sunday night despite their loss.