The NFL kept to its word during Sunday’s Chiefs vs. Jaguars game after announcing the intention to crack down on illegal formation. This appeared to stem largely from Kansas City offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor in Week 1, as his formation sparked a widespread reaction from fans.
Taylor was flagged five times during the team’s 17–9 win on Sunday, including two false starts, one illegal formation and two holding calls. During the third quarter, Chiefs coach Andy Reid even took Taylor briefly out of the game after he was penalized for two holding calls in just three plays.
However, Taylor returned from the bench shortly after, causing fans to be confused about the reasoning behind the decision. Reid later explained the reasoning for this.
“I took him out for a couple plays. Stepped back,” Reid told reporters after the game. “This is home, not only home, but also where he played. You know, just stepped back and let’s get you back out there. He had some big blocks later in the game there. Did a nice job finishing.”
As this is Taylor’s first season with the Chiefs after spending four seasons with the Jaguars, Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes noted that it might take time for the tackle to get adjusted to their way of playing.
“I mean, through social media he knew some of this was going to get called,” Mahomes said, via Pro Football Talk. “They’re cracking down on some of the alignment stuff, but we’re playing football, man. He’ll get closer to the line of scrimmage than I guess everyone else, but he’ll get closer, so they don’t call it and we’ll continue to work on the snap counts.
“But he’s a great player. He’ll continue to play and get comfortable. And it’s hard when they’re getting picked on a little bit to keep playing your game, but I have all the confidence in him in the world.”
Before Week 2’s game, Taylor defended his formation stating that he isn’t doing anything “illegal.”