Why is former TCU tight end Jared Wiley eager to learn from the best in Kansas City?

Jared Wiley would’ve been happy landing with any of the 32 NFL franchises, but when he learned that he was being drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs, it took a special moment to another level.

The former TCU tight end was selected by the two-time defending Super Bowl champions in the fourth round after he was voted first team All-Big 12 following his career season last year.

His reward for that breakout year is playing with the best quarterback in the NFL in Patrick Mahomes, the best offensive mind in the league in Chiefs head coach Andy Reid and of course, one of the greatest tight ends to ever play in Travis Kelce. Speaking with the media on Tuesday, Wiley said it was a surreal experience to land with such an organization.

“About a million things were going my mind,” Wiley said. “What a place to be. Kansas City is the powerhouse in the NFL and one of the top powerhouses in all of sports right now. To just be able to go there and learn their culture and be able to be in that winning environment it’s going to be really fun for me.”

It’s the ultimate win-win for Wiley, who walks into a situation with stability across the board and a mentor in Kelce that he can learn from.

“I can’t wait to be a sponge and be able to absorb as much information as I can possibly can,” Wiley said. “Travis has done a really good job of doing what he does and he’s done it for a really longtime, so I know everybody talks about the plays he makes but I don’t see a lot of people talking about the fact he’s in (Year 11), that’s a long time in the NFL. I’m really excited to learn how he does his day to day stuff.”

Kelce’s historic run is in its twilight days with retirement a real possibility in the coming years. Kelce saw a slight dip in production last season with 984 receiving yards, his first season under 1,000 yards since 2015.

The wear and tear of so many deep playoff runs eventually catches up to you and it’s not like Kelce doesn’t own a ton of records as it is. While Wiley’s time could be coming soon he acknowledged he was happy that Kelce signed a two-year, $34.25 million contract in April.

“There was probably nobody more excited than me,” Wiley said. “Just being able to have more time with him to learn under him. In my opinion that’s the best tight end to ever play the game, I know it might take a couple of years for me to even scratch the surface to be on that level. The fact I can sit back and say ‘Okay, how can I find my way on the field in year one, year one’s done, how can I start transitioning my game to something else (for Year 2)?”

Kelce didn’t see his breakout until his second season after playing in just one game in his rookie season in 2013. However, the Chiefs may have more of a need for Wiley to make an immediate impact for a number of reasons.

There’s likely going to be a desire to not put so much of a workload on Kelce in the regular season and Kansas City could be without its top receiver Rashee Rice for a big portion of the season after the former SMU receiver allegedly caused a car crash in Dallas in April. Rice was charged with one count of aggravated assault, one count of collision involving serious bodily injury and six counts of collision involving injury for his role in the crash.

The Chiefs drafted Texas receiver Xavier Worthy and added free agent Hollywood Brown in the offseason so Wiley will be in a position where he’ll have more opportunities, but won’t have a ton of pressure on his shoulders compared to the other off-season acquisitions.

With the winning culture plus multiple Hall of Fame caliber players there’s no question that Wiley is in a dream like scenario and he’s determined to make the most of it.

“My goal right now is to go up there and get comfortable and become one of the guys that the coaching staff and players trust,” Wiley said.