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Chiefs' Jamaal Charles: 'I caused us the loss'

Thursday night Jamaal Charles took control of the contest, then he gave it away.

The Kansas City Chiefs' running back fumbled the ball with 35 seconds to plays, leading to the Denver Broncos' game-winning score in a wild 31-24 contest.

"It's one of the hardest feelings right now that I've felt in a long time," Charles said following the loss, via the Chiefs website. "I caused us the loss today. I tried to put the team on my back, and I ended up losing the game. It's all on me tonight."

The fumble came just nine seconds after Peyton Manning drove the Broncos 80 yards in 10 plays for the game-tying touchdown.

Charles' game-sealing fumble marked the fifth turnover of the night for the Chiefs and was the running back's second misstep after losing the ball in the red zone on the team's first drive.

There will be plenty of debate about whether or not coach Andy Reid should have knelt and headed to overtime, but handing the ball to your best player with under a minute to play is generally a safe, conservative play that most coaches make in that situation. 

"I was just trying to make a play and (wasn't) careful with the ball, and one of the defenders punched it out," Charles said of the final fumble, poked free by linebacker Brandon Marshall. "I should have been smarter and put two hands on the ball.

"I just know better as a vet, playing this game a long time. I have to know those situations. I have to know not to fumble the ball at the end of a game, know to try to make it to overtime to give us a chance to compete for a win. I didn't give us (a) chance, and that's the hardest feeling right there."

Charles carried the load for the Chiefs' offense, going for 125 rushing yards on 21 carries and a touchdown, but the only thing that he -- or anyone else -- will remember is the fateful fumble.

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