Chiefs starter was the most-penalized player in 2023

The Chiefs won their second consecutive Super Bowl despite starting the most penalized player in the NFL this past season.

Right tackle Jawaan Taylor, who signed a four-year, $80 million to join Kansas City after four years with the Jaguars, committed an NFL-high 20 penalties in 2023, per NFLPenalties.com. That beat the next-closest player, former Jets offensive tackle Mekhi Becton, by eight penalties. As a team, the Chiefs ranked ninth in the NFL in total penalties with 112.

Officials flagged Taylor for nine false starts, eight offensive holds, three illegal formations, one illegal block above the waist, one illegal use of hands and one face mask. Those penalties accounted for 140 lost yards for Kansas City, which also ranked first in the NFL.

Titans guard Dillon Radunz tied Taylor for the most false starts, while Chiefs teammate Trey Smith also had eight offensive holding calls against him.

Taylor’s penalty issues were a storyline all season for the Chiefs. Officials noticeably didn’t call Taylor for penalties in the Chiefs’ season-opening loss to the Lions. Head coach Andy Reid later benched Taylor in the second half of Week 3 against the Bears after multiple illegal formation penalties.

The Chiefs didn’t replace Taylor this offseason but did draft three offensive linemen
. KC took BYU OT Kingsley Suamataia in the second round, Penn State C Hunter Nourzad in the fifth and Holy Cross OG C.J. Hanson. Suamataia should battle for the starting left tackle role vacated by Donovan Smith and currently occupied by Wanya Morris. The versatile Nourzad has played nearly every position on the offensive line and should be a depth piece for the Chiefs.

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Taylor’s penalty issues are a big red flag for the Chiefs’ threepeat Super Bowl hopes, but they were able to overcome them in 2023. Time will tell if that will sink Kansas City in 2024, though.

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