HomeDa Birds NewsIs Jason Kelce Retiring? Don't Pity Me!

Is Jason Kelce Retiring? Don’t Pity Me!

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Is Jason Kelce Retiring? Don’t Pity Me!

Franchise legend Jason Kelce spoke Wednesday morning for the first time since the Philadelphia Eagles suffered a season-ending postseason loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and reports indicated that he informed teammates after the game that he is retiring after 13 seasons.

In a new episode of his “New Heights” podcast with his brother Travis, Kelce didn’t deny speaking to teammates in the locker room after the loss, but said he didn’t announce his retirement to the group.

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“Nick [Sirianni] kind of gave me an opportunity to talk. I didn’t announce what I was doing on purpose, despite I guess what’s been leaked to the media,” Kelce said. “I just don’t think you’re in a position after a game like that to really make that decision. I just don’t. There’s too much emotion in the moment to really fully grasp that decision.”

At the same time, Kelce didn’t necessarily sound like someone who is planning to return for another season.

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“I’m not trying to be dramatic and continue to draw this thing out. I’m really not,” Kelce continued. “It’s just something that I think when it’s time to officially announce what’s happening in the future, it’ll be done in a way that’s definitive and pays respect to a lot of people and individuals that have meant a lot to me and has led to the career that I’ve had. I don’t think that it would be respectful or even accurate to be able to do that right after a game like that.”

“But I did address the team and pretty much said the same thing that I just said to you, which is ‘I’ve got belief in every single one of you guys, cherish the moments you’ve got in this league.'”

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Kelce — like long-time teammate Fletcher Cox, who also faces an uncertain future — declined to speak to the media after the loss Monday evening. Wednesday will be locker room clean out day at Lincoln Financial Field, with media able to request to speak to players. Perhaps during that time, Kelce will take questions.

While it’s natural for a player that just wrapped up his age-36 season to be — likely — walking away, from a talent perspective, Kelce is still at the height of his powers. He was voted a First-Team All-Pro in 2023 for the third consecutive season, and sixth time overall in a career destined for the Hall of Fame. While there might be some debate about whether it makes sense to bring back a franchise stalwart like defensive end Brandon Graham for another season, the Eagles would likely have bent over backwards to accommodate Kelce coming back for one more campaign.

Related: ‘Farewell Tour’: Brandon Graham Wants To Play One More Season

But Kelce has weighed retirement for years now, and even if he’s not quite ready to make it official, it certainly seems like things are trending in that direction. And as far as his career potentially ending on a 32-9 loss and a disastrous collapse that saw the Eagles lose six of their last seven games? The seven-time Pro Bowler doesn’t want any tears shed on his behalf.

“A lot of guys were like ‘If that is your last game, I feel sorry for you.’ And I’m like, ‘Don’t feel sorry for me, (bleeper). I’ve had a (bleeping) … [trails off into trying to hold back tears.].'”

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