The Jacksonville Jaguars will host the defending Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. This will be the toughest test for the young Jaguars this season after being knocked out of their magical playoff run by the Chiefs last season. If the Jags didn't already have enough of a David versus Goliath battle, the game will be officiated by referee Adrian Hill and his crew. Let's dive into Hill's history with both teams and see if Jacksonville will face two enemies Sunday.
Referee Hill and his team have officiated seven games for the Jaguars and Chiefs since 2019. The results and penalties statistics are a bit upsetting. Hill called an above-average 41 percent of his overall penalties via offensive holding and false starts in 2022.
In the five games of the Jaguars in which Hill officiated, they are 0-5. They have never won a game in which Adrian Hill & Crew oversaw. A little more alarming is that the Jags have never covered the spread laid against them by Vegas and Odds makers — a statistical improbability at best.
The Jaguars were out-penalized 31 times to their opponent's 24 flags in four questionable games, for a yardage difference of 234 yards to their opponent's 212. Numbers don't lie, but again, statistical oddities. Let's see how the Chiefs fair under Mr. Hill and gang.
In two games the Chiefs have played with Hill on the field, they are 2-0. They have never lost a game Adrian Hill has officiated in his five years as an NFL referee. The Chiefs have been pretty good the past few years with Mahomes and all; let's chalk it up to that.
But Vegas can't always be right; should the spread tell a different story? It does not. The Chiefs covered the point spread in every game Hill officiated. In a 2022 game against the Rams, the Chiefs were a 15.5-point favorite. They won that game by 16 points exactly. The Rams were penalized 2.5 times as much as the Chiefs in that game.
Jaguars vs. Chiefs: What to expect Sunday
The NFL and Referees have long been suspected of over-penalizing small-market teams in key plays. All Jaguars fans remember the 2017 AFC championship game where the Patriots O-line was egregiously holding the Jaguar pass rushers in the fourth quarter. Let's not even bring up Myles Jack's fumble return for a touchdown being erroneously blown dead mid-play. Jack was not down!
I can believe the outcomes of these seven games may be accurate and officiated correctly, possibly. The Jaguars did get two No.1 overall picks in this time frame while The Chiefs won a Super Bowl. However, Adrian Hill and Crew, you are suspect, debatable, discreditable, villainizable, and put on notice.
Penalties and lack of holding calls on the Chiefs, Jawaan Taylor specifically, will be closely monitored. Do the right thing, Adrian Hill, referee a fair game. I'm still going to bet the Chiefs to cover the three-point spread.