Right tackle Jawaan Taylor was one of the few players the Jacksonville Jaguars let walk in free agency. Although the Jags made Taylor an offer, he chose to sign with the Kansas City Chiefs and made his debut against the Detroit Lions in Week 1. While he generally did a good job of containing the edge, he caught everyone's attention for what seemed to be a series of non-called false starts.
Taylor became known in Jacksonville for adjusting his foot and dropping back just at the right time the ball was snapped. This makes it appear as a false start. And in the opener, the internet didn't stop talking about it. Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk went as far as to suggest the refs were looking the other way and described the whole thing as 'ridiculous'.
This isn't surprising to everyone who has followed Taylor's career though. He's done that since the Jags drafted him in the second round in 2019. Sometimes, he won't time his dropback correctly and that will indeed lead to a false start. But more often than not, his timing will be correct.
More than anything, Taylor knows the rules and is taking advantage of a loophole that allows him to adjust his feet before the ball is snapped. Here's offensive line guru Duke Mayweather giving a detailed explanation of why Taylor wasn't flagged.
Former Jaguars RT Jawaan Taylor wasn't the reason the Chiefs lost Thursday
There are many reasons why the Chiefs lost to the Lions but Jawaan Taylor wasn't one of them. Sure, it must sting to be singled out but Kansas City was without defensive end Chris Jones and tight end Travis Kelce. The former was in the midst of a contract dispute and the latter was dealing with a hyperextended knee. Jones and Kelce are arguably the most important non-Patrick Mahomes players on the Chiefs' roster, and not having them against Detroit hurt their chances of winning.
Without Kelce in the fold, Mahomes had no viable targets in the passing game. Wide receivers Skyy Moore and Kadarius Toney were non-factors and the top target was sophomore running back Isaiah Pacheco, who hauled in four receptions for 31 yards. Now, the Chiefs will have nine days to prepare for the Jaguars and they'll need to make many adjustments if they want to avoid a 0-2 start.
The Jaguars are currently getting ready for the Indianapolis Colts, so they can't devote too much attention to Kansas City. Once they play in Week 1, that's when they'll turn their attention to the Chiefs and one thing they'll keep an eye on is whether tight end Travis Kelce will play. Similarly, it will be worth monitoring whether Chris Jones' contract extension will extend beyond this week or if he and the team will get back to the negotiation table to ensure he's back for Week 2.
One thing is sure, the Chiefs game could define the Jaguars' season and Thursday provided a taste of what's to come. Head coach Doug Pederson must get the troop ready and win both of their first two games if they want to position themselves for a deep