Father maintains Travis, Jason Kelce won't retire; 2024 NFL game on a Wednesday?

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, center, talks to his brother Jason Kelce following the AFC Championship NFL football game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, Jan. 28, 2024, in Baltimore. The Chiefs won 17-10. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Is retirement around the corner for NFL stars Travis and Jason Kelce?

Anything could happen, of course, but their father weighed in on the topic over the weekend in an exclusive interview with the Los Angeles Times.

Travis Kelce, All-Pro tight end for Kansas City, definitely has interests outside of football. He’s dating Taylor Swift, is in a slew of commercials and showed off his comedy chops last season by hosting “Saturday Night Live.”

Having won his third Super Bowl ring Sunday, the 34-year-old Kelce could finish his career with a win-it-all mic drop, the way quarterbacks John Elway and Peyton Manning did.

His dad dismissed that notion.

Ed Kelce, father of the Chiefs' Travis and the Eagles' Jason, supports both his sons even in clothing.
Ed Kelce, father of the Chiefs' Travis and the Eagles' Jason, supports both his sons even in clothing. (Sam Farmer / Los Angeles Times)

“I’ve heard these things about Travis retiring,” Ed Kelce said. “The way he’s said it is Travis will play until his wheels come off. Travis will play until they say, 'No, you may not,’ or, 'Nobody wants you.’ I mean, he’s not foolish to try to come back from a catastrophic injury or something, to keep going and risk further physical troubles.”

But the thought of walking away from the game with gas in the tank?

“Never gonna happen,” his dad said. “And you can quote me on that.”

As for Jason Kelce, 36, six-time All-Pro center for Philadelphia, there’s more speculation he might call it a career. His dad said he’s trying to read the tea leaves just like Eagles fans, but he gave some reasons why his son would be inclined to stick around.

“He said something to the team after the [playoff] loss at Tampa,” the elder Kelce said. “It was something to the effect of, 'Cherish these years that you’re playing, because it will come to an end.' Now did he say, 'I’m out of here. I’m retiring’”?

Read more: Chiefs coach Andy Reid on Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes: 'He never flinches'

Someone associated with the team interpreted it that way, but it doesn’t sound as if it were definitive.

“Subsequently, Jason said, 'I’m not really sure I said that, but even if I did it’s not a decision you can make in a moment like that,’” his dad said. “He said, 'We just got embarrassed. We lost another game we could have won,’ and he has not told me he’s retiring.”

However, Ed Kelce conceded his son has dropped hints about being more available for off-the-field interests next fall, such as tending to the vegetables he grows on his small farm in the Philadelphia area.

“It’s the same story with him as it is with every one of these guys,” Kelce said. “The hardest thing isn’t the money. I mean, for some of them it is, but for guys like him, it’s the locker room, and the guys, and doing what they’ve been doing since they were 12 years old.”

Read more: What's the 'real' Taylor Swift like? Travis Kelce's dad talks about life around the pop superstar

Ed Kelce said he gets a strong indication that Jason doesn’t want his career to end on this type of sour note, with the Eagles starting 10-1 before losing five of six games and being one-and-done in the playoffs. What’s more, he has noticed that his son hasn’t starting shedding weight yet, which Jason plans to do when he steps away from football.

“He doesn’t like the weight if he doesn’t have to carry it,” Ed said.

Andy Reid sticking around

Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid celebrates after his Super Bowl LVIII victory.

Speaking of retirement, Chiefs coach Andy Reid confirmed after the game and again Monday morning that he was not ready to ride off into the sunset.

His wife, Tammy, echoed that.

“Why would he retire, he’s having so much fun,” she said of her 65-year-old husband, a three-time Super Bowl champion head coach and virtual lock for the Hall of Fame.

Read more: Patrick Mahomes repeats greatness in Chiefs' Super Bowl LVIII overtime win over 49ers

“And I will promise you this, he’s not going to retire by telling some guy asking him if he’s going to retire. It’s not going to happen like that.”

So how much time does he have left?

“Who knows,” she said. “We have two years left on the contract, does that work?”

NFL game on a Wednesday?

Chargers coach Jim Harbaugh speaks during his introductory press conference.
Might Chargers new coach Jim Harbaugh make his return to the NFL in the season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs? (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

With the Chiefs winning the Super Bowl, that means the season once again will begin at Arrowhead Stadium.

The season that just finished began with an up-and-coming team, Detroit, getting the nod as the visitors in that marquee game. The Lions made the most of it by beating the Chiefs.

The NFL might want to try that formula again, and two possible candidates for that season-opening matchup at Kansas City are Houston, led by second-year quarterback C.J. Stroud, and the Chargers, now coached by Jim Harbaugh. The Chargers are in the AFC West with Kansas City, and the Texans too have a game at Arrowhead.

Christmas falls on a Wednesday this year, and the NFL rarely plays on Wednesdays but the league likes Christmas Day games. It’s too tight a window for a team to play on a Sunday and a Wednesday, so watch for the NFL to experiment with the idea of a Saturday-Wednesday combination that week, as opposed to a Sunday-Thursday one.

Rams finally get 1

Rams general manager Les Snead walks onto the field before a game.
Rams general manager Les Snead has not had the chance to draft in the first round in quite a while. (Kyusung Gong / Associated Press)

Here’s a rarity: The Rams are scheduled to pick in the first round of the draft. They haven’t done that since taking quarterback Jared Goff first overall in 2016.

The Rams have the 19th pick. The Chargers pick fifth.

It would be no surprise at all if Rams general manager Les Snead were to trade up or down. Among the pressing needs for the team are edge rusher, cornerback, an offensive lineman or receiver.

Need to draft a quarterback?

USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams stays loose during a timeout in a game against Utah.

As with every year, it seems, quarterbacks are going to be the hot topic this offseason, especially with the top three teams in the draft needing a new one — Chicago, Washington and New England. The intrigue could be if the Bears opt to stick with Justin Fields and trade out of the No. 1 spot for a hefty price.


The landscape is loaded with intriguing quarterback prospects, among them USC’s Caleb Williams, North Carolina’s Drake Maye, Louisiana State’s Jayden Daniels, Washington’s Michael Penix, Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy and Oregon’s Bo Nix.

Fire up the talking heads. Let the offseason debates begin.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.