Ciarán Whelan has branded the decision to send off David Clifford against Tyrone as "terrible".
TV cameras showed the Kerry captain being dragged to the ground by Ben McDonnell, where he held his arms out to demonstrate his refusal to engage in the scuffle.
He was incensed by Fergal Kelly's decision to show him, and McDonnell, yellow cards, meaning Clifford was sent-off, remonstrating with Kelly, who was facing away from the incident, and his umpires.
Whelan says it's another example of key players who have picked up a booking being targeted in scuffles to get them dismissed. Clifford had scored six points as Kerry fell one point short at Edendork.
"This is something that's been in the game for a few years where key players are targeted by defenders to try and suck them in and get them a yellow card," said Whelan on RTÉ's Allianz League Sunday.
"Terrible decision by Fergal Kelly"— The Sunday Game (@TheSundayGame) February 9, 2020
Ciarán Whelan reacts to David Clifford's sending off against Tyrone after the Kerry captain received a second yellow card following an off the ball incident #RTEGAA pic.twitter.com/bPmawowPx8
"We really need referees to start to stand up to this and see common sense.
"We saw the incident, the umpires were behind the goal. David Clifford is not going to be instigating.
"He's the key player and he gets dragged to the ground and picks up a yellow card and you can see how frustrated, how annoyed he is.
"It's been a bugbear of mine for a couple of years that when the key players are targets, they get sucked in and get a silly yellow card.
"We need common sense. Terrible decision by Fergal Kelly."
Kerry manager Peter Keane said: “It is easy pickings to say that there are two fellas involved and I will give both of them both yellows and, because he had picked up one early in the first half, two yellows make a red.”