L'Jarius Sneed might have made the defensive play of the year for the Chiefs

Sneed's been one of the Chiefs' better corners all year, and he showed it again on Sunday.

AFC Divisional Playoffs - Kansas City Chiefs v Buffalo Bills
AFC Divisional Playoffs - Kansas City Chiefs v Buffalo Bills / Perry Knotts/GettyImages
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L'Jarius Sneed's been making plays in Kansas City all year, and yet on Sunday he may have made his – and the Chiefs – biggest play yet.

Midway through the 4th quarter of the AFC Championship, the Ravens – down two scores – were driving down the field and looked poised to cut the lead to three points. On 2nd and 8, Ravens QB Lamar Jackson hit WR Zay Flowers on a shallow crosser. Flowers looked like he had a clean route to the end zone, and then this happened:

After the officials reviewed the play, it was ruled a fumble into the end zone, which gave the Chiefs the ball at their own 20 yard line. It was a brutal blow for the Ravens, and one of the most impactful plays of the afternoon: according to NFL's Next Gen Stats, Flowers' fumble cut Baltimore's win probability in half. It was an especially sweet play for Sneed who, only a few plays earlier, was the focus of some taunting from Flowers after a 54-yard catch.

Sneed's played well for the Chiefs all year – he was ranked 31st overall by Pro Football Focus – and was widely considered one of the bigger Pro Bowl snubs from the 2023 season. Whether or not the two sides reach an agreement on a contract extension will be one of the biggest storylines to watch for GM Brett Veach and the rest of the Chiefs' front office this offseason. But for those who have watched him through the four years he's played in Kansas City, the game-changing play wasn't too surprising:

It probably won't be a game for Flowers to remember, but if Kansas City manages to hang on, beat the Ravens, and clinch a berth in Super Bowl LVIII – their 4th in appearance since 2019 – it'll be hard to forget the role that Sneed played in making that happen.

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