Ever since the heartbreak of the Super Bowl loss, the next shoe we have been waiting to see drop is Jason Kelce’s plans for the future. For the past several off-seasons, he has mulled retirement. But every time he has come back and still played like the best Center in the league. And now we know he will be returning for at least one more season. Jason Kelce announced today that he is not quite done playing Football in a statement that in typical Kelce fashion, is NSFW.
Given how great he played last season, it is easy to understand why he chose to return. Kelce made his 5th All pro team in 12 seasons. Once again he went an entire season without giving up a sack. And all season we saw him, in vintage Kelce fashion, making blocks downfield. He is more than capable of coming back and making it 6 times he has been named a First-Team All-Pro.
Kelce was never a hyped prospect, even coming out of High School. He received no D-1 Scholarships. Leading him to a difficult decision. Accept a scholarship to a D-2 school, or bet on himself and try to walk on at a D-1 University. He chose to bet on himself. But even that was difficult. He went to Cincinnati and didn’t really have a position. In high school, he played Running Back and Linebacker, but he was not really a fit at either position in College. But eventually, they decided on making him an offensive lineman.
In three years between playing guard and center, he made a couple All-Big 10 teams and got an honorable mention as an All-American. That was not enough to make him a highly-rated prospect going into the draft though. His small size for a center was a big knock on him, causing him to last all the way to the 6th round. Eagles fans will be forever thankful for that though. Because under Howard Mudd, and then later Jeff Stoutland he developed into one of the best centers of all time.
Jason Kelce has changed the way his position is played. More and more we see Centers that are smaller and get out and move downfield. Kelce’s handpicked replacement fits that mold too. He helped the Eagles find Cam Jurgens, who will eventually replace him at center. But for now, expect Jurgens to kick out to Right Guard to fill in for Isaac Seumalo who is likely to leave in free agency.
He is already set to go down as one of the most popular players in Eagles history. And now he gets a chance to add on to his Eagles legacy and Hall of Fame resume.
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