All-Time Eagle, All-Pro C Kelce Opts For Birds Return
Straight from the man himself, an all-time Philadelphia Eagle great is back for another season.
I have put much thought into whether it makes sense to play another season. After talking it over with my wife and many other friends and family, I have decided to return for another year. Thank you to all my supporters and detractors for fueling me, I ain’t fucking done yet!
— Jason Kelce (@JasonKelce) March 13, 2023
Five-time All Pro center Jason Kelce will return to the Eagles for year 13 after a 2022 season where he looked better than ever, opening up run holes for a team that rushed for 2,509 yards and 32 touchdowns and consistently keeping a clean pocket for QB Jalen Hurts.
The new deal is for one year at $14.25 million, with a chance to be $14.75 million, a league source told ITB’s Adam Caplan.
As the team’s iron man, the 2011 sixth round draft pick Kelce has made 139 consecutive starts, the second longest active streak in the entire NFL behind Atlanta Falcons left tackle Jake Matthews.
The 35-year-old has been in the retirement rumor mill for several seasons running, yet consistently comes back as one of the NFL’s best offensive linemen.
In the past two seasons, the Eagles have drafted centers in the second round of the draft, Landon Dickerson in 2021 and Cam Jurgens in 2022, to prepare for Kelce’s potential exit that has yet to come.
Bringing back the best center in the league will also soften the potential loss in free agency of starting guard Isaac Seumalo. Jurgens could step in as the next starting right guard.
The welcome news comes on day one of the legal tampering period for free agency, where the Eagles have already lost a key piece with starting LB T.J. Edwards heading to the Chicago Bears.
Kelce joins fellow Eagles legend Brandon Graham in returning to compete for a championship in 2023 after coming up just short in Super Bowl LVII. Both are heroes for Philadelphia’s first ever Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots in 2018.
The team’s two longest- tenured players are back to provide stability to an organization facing shakeups at many positions.
– Benjamin Paul is a staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com
Listen to the latest Inside The Birds podcast with Adam Caplan and Geoff Mosher:
Or watch on YouTube: