Chiefs’ head coach speaks out for the first time about the retirement of Eagles legend. 🏈 Andy Reid on Jason: “Between Travis and then Jason, I’ve watched both guys grow. Tremendous players, and Jason is a great leader…”

While Andy Reid hasn’t coached Jason Kelce since 2012, he had nothing but respect for the Eagles legend as he enters retirement.

Chiefs Andy Reid with hearts in his eyes next to Eagles Jason Kelce

When Jason Kelce got drafted to the Philadelphia Eagles, Andy Reid was his head coach. And in Super Bowl 57, Kelce lined up against Reid.

The Kansas City Chiefs came out on top, winning, 38-35. Reid might’ve came out victorious, but he had nothing but love for Kelce upon hearing the offensive lineman has retired, via Zach Berman of PHLY.

“That family, I’ve become close with it. Between Travis and then Jason, I’ve watched both guys grow,” Reid said. “Tremendous players, and Jason is a great leader – emotional player, brings that to the table, and has done so for a long time. 13 years? That’s a long time.”

“My hat goes off to him. He’s going on top as a player, an All-Pro player. Could he have played a couple more years? Probably,” Reid continued. “But that body, it’s taken a lot of pounding. And he’s got a nice little gig going now. But listen – I’m proud – I love the kid, and I’m proud of him for making that decision.”

“Whatever he does, he’s going to do great at,” Reid concluded.

Kelce, Reid team up

Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce (62) thanks the fans as he leaves the field after a 2024 NFC wild card game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium.
Philadelphia used a sixth-round pick on Kelce in 2011. It didn’t take long for him to make an impact, as he was immediately named the starter at center after winning the job in training camp.

His sophomore season was cut short after suffering a brutal ACL and MCL injury. However, from there, Kelce would become an ironman in Philadelphia. Outside of four missed games in 2014, Kelce started every game for the Eagles from 2013-2023. He was a seven-time Pro Bowler, six-time All-Pro and a Super Bowl champion.

While he welcomed the offensive lineman to the league, Reid didn’t have the longest tenure with Kelce under his watch. After a rough 4-12 season in 2022, Reid’s contract wasn’t renewed. Still, the head coach knew just how talented and invested Kelce was. It didn’t take him a decade to see what he was cut out to be a center in the NFL.

Reid admires from afar

While he not have been coaching Jason Kelce, Reid has had the opportunity to work his brother for his entire NFL career. Travis Kelce’s first year with the Kansas City Chiefs was also Reid’s.

The two have gone on to have immense success together. The tight end is a nine-time Pro Bowler, and four-time Pro Bowler. Together, they have helped lead the Chiefs to four Super Bowl titles.

In their most recent win over the San Francisco 49ers, fans got to see an insight into the Kelce’s bond. Through both their New Heights podcast and the center’s excitement at Chiefs games, the pair connected through Kansas City’s road to the championship.

And in a way, Andy Reid got to connect with his lineman once again. While he wasn’t coaching him, they shared the jubilation of a championship and understood the battletested road that was walked to get there.

Whether standing on the same sidelines or opposite, Reid has always admired Kelce as a player a person. As he walks off into the sunset, Reid couldn’t be prouder of what his former lineman has and will accomplish.

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