Philadelphia Eagles' Jason Kelce Announces Retirement After Illustrious 13-Year Career

Philadelphia Eagles' Jason Kelce Announces Retirement After Illustrious 13-Year Career

PHILADELPHIA, March 4, 2024 – Jason Kelce, the Philadelphia Eagles' renowned center, has officially announced his retirement from the National Football League after an impressive 13-season career. The announcement came during an emotional press conference held at the Philadelphia Eagles Training Center at the NovaCare Complex, marking the end of a journey that included seven Pro Bowl selections, six first-team All-Pro honors, and a Super Bowl victory.

Kelce, 36, delivered a heartfelt speech that lasted nearly 40 minutes, during which he recounted his lifelong passion for football that started in his hometown of Cleveland Heights, Ohio. He shared poignant memories from his childhood, collegiate days, and professional career, eventually declaring his retirement through tears. Known for his humility and work ethic, Kelce humorously referred to himself as "officially overrated, vastly overrated," acknowledging the underdog mentality that fueled his successful career.

Throughout his speech, Kelce expressed gratitude to a wide array of individuals who supported him along the way, from coaches and teammates to cafeteria workers. He made special mention of his family, thanking his wife Kylie, mother Donna, father Ed, and his brother Travis, the Kansas City Chiefs' star tight end, highlighting the deep bond they share.

Kelce's decision to retire has been a topic of speculation for over a year, especially following a candid documentary that revealed the physical toll the game had taken on him and its impact on his young family. The speculation intensified after the Eagles' season ended with a loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a wild-card playoff game on January 15, where Kelce was seen emotionally embracing his offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland and searching for his family in the stands.

Despite previous reports suggesting Kelce had informed his teammates of his retirement decision immediately after the game, he clarified on his New Heights podcast that he had not made a final decision at that time. Kelce's career has been marked not only by his achievements on the field but also by his resilience in the face of injuries, including a torn MCL and partial ACL tear in 2012 and playing through multiple injuries in 2018.

As Kelce steps away from the gridiron, he leaves behind a legacy as one of the greatest centers in NFL history, celebrated for his dedication, skill, and the indelible mark he has left on the Philadelphia Eagles and the sport of football.