Ciarán Whelan believes David Clifford's sending off against Tyrone was a "terrible decision".
Kerry captain Clifford received a second yellow card in the Allianz Football League Division One encounter following an off the ball incident with Tyrone substitute Ben McDonald.
Referee Fergal Kelly showed both players a yellow card after consulting his umpires and with Clifford already on a yellow, he was given his marching orders.
Analysing the incident on RTÉ2's Allianz League Sunday, former Dublin All Star Whelan said Clifford had reason to feel aggrieved by the decision.
"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
"This is something that's been in the game for a few years where a key player is targeted by defenders to try and suck them in and get them a yellow card," he said.
"And we really need referees to start to stand up to this and to 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."