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Jacksonville Jaguars’ Arden Key and Kansas City Chiefs’ Khalen Saunders fined for hitting QBs in divisional round

The Jacksonville Jaguars’ 27-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Divisional Round was marred by several critical plays gone the wrong way. This weekend, the NFL decided one of those plays was a dropped call.

Second Tom Pelissero of NFL NetworkChiefs defensive tackle Khalen Saunders was fined for manhandling the passer on a hit against Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence on 2nd-and-7 midway through the third quarter.

Saunders, who was a free rusher, was not flagged for the play, and the Jaguars finally punted two plays later after Saunders’ hit caused a near interception.

The Jaguars, meanwhile, were getting a passer penalty rough called correctly. During a 98-yard halftime touchdown drive with backup quarterback Chad Henne in center, Jaguars edge rusher Arden Key was flagged for roughing the passer on a four-yard completion on 3rd and 3, bringing the Chiefs advancing the ball to midfield and later scoring a critical touchdown.

Key was not fined for hitting Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who exited the game with an ankle injury after Key and Corey Peters hit his completion. Mahomes then came back in the second half.

“I didn’t see it other than him being tackled from behind. I have not seen the whole play. I’m sure he got something rolled. One of the players probably rolled up on the back of his legs,” Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson said after the loss.

“Hats off to him for gutting him out there in the second half and keeping him and playing poorly. That’s a sign of a real leader and a winner and that’s what he is.”

“He is a warrior man. When we saw Pat come out of the game, we thought it was a good opportunity to take advantage of Henne,” Jaguars safety Rayshawn Jenkins said after the game. “He came in and was still able to operate and do some good stuff offensively. ”.

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