A Missouri man’s attempt to catch a pass thrown by Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes II during the team’s victory parade was thwarted by a parking meter in a painful moment that was caught on camera.
LaRue Bell, 43, of St. Joseph, Missouri, was at the Chiefs’ Super Bowl victory parade Wednesday when he said he saw Mahomes – who was on top of a bus on the parade route at the time – point to him, before throwing a football.
A spectator up in a building recorded Mahomes’ pass as it happened, tracking the ball as it soared over the heads of the crowd below, then capturing the moment it bounced off a truck as Bell reached for the ball – only to brutally collide with the parking meter directly in front of him.
Bell can then be seen bouncing off the metal meter and landing on the pavement, with his arms and legs straight out around him, starfish-style.
The ball, meanwhile, ricochets off the hands of another fan who was going for the catch, then bounces off the ground.
At the same time, a police officer standing in the truck bed next to the laid-out Bell can be seen pointing down at him, while a shocked bystander covers their mouth and goes to Bell’s side.
Since being posted on social media, the video has been viewed more than seven million times and was even spotted the next day by Mahomes himself, who retweeted it and asked: ‘Yo is the dude who hit the parking meter okay?’
Bell, however, had no idea that the video existed.
He told the Kansas City Star that when he went into work the next day – sore, but otherwise alright – he found his coworkers at St. Joseph’s National Beef Leathers tannery laughing over a video.
Then, one of those coworkers looked over at him and said, ‘Hey, that’s you.’
‘I hit it pretty hard,’ Bell said of the parking meter. ‘I took a professional NFL hit for that ball. That was my Super Bowl.’
Bell – a former high school fullback and junior college linebacker – told Fox4KC that he ‘got caught by surprise’ and that he ‘was running the route OK.’
But, he said, Mahomes ‘overthrew the ball. He overthrew it. I was trying to make up for it by going for it, and I hit the pole.’
Bell said the first person to help him was his 11-year-old daughter who said, ‘Hey dad, did you get knocked out?’ and asked if he was OK.
She then helped him stand, while another fan grabbed the ball and ran off with it.
All the police officer did ‘is point and laugh,’ Bell said.
Bell seemed to be taking his viral video moment in stride, though, despite the inevitable social media wisecracks about how it ‘really is a post route’ and ‘a hit on a defenseless receiver.’
‘It hurt, but the laughs took over everything,’ Bell told the Kansas City Star. ‘I feel a little better than yesterday. That pole was not forgiving at all.’
Bell told Fox4KC that he hopes he’ll get to meet Mahomes one day and have a chance at running a route that doesn’t involve a parking meter on defense.