Eagles’ Jason Kelce Confirms Retirement

In the wake of the Eagles’ wild-card loss, it was reported center Jason Kelce informed his teammates of his intention to retire. The future Hall of Famer confirmed that decision in a press conference on Monday.

Kelce’s future remained uncertain until Monday, as he declined to make a formal announcement. He spoke about a desire to remain with the Eagles in some capacity, while also looking into a potential transition to the broadcast booth. The 36-year-old has done extensive homework with multiple networks, and there will no doubt be a considerable market for his services in his post-playing days.

A sixth-round pick in 2011, Kelce was a full-time starter in his rookie season and he maintained his place atop the depth chart throughout his storied career. He was forced to miss considerable time only once in his 13-year tenure, and he was able to suit up for every game from 2015 onwards. Across that span, Kelce cemented his status as one of the best O-lineman (at any position) of his generation.

The Cincinnati alum earned at least a Pro Bowl invitation or a first-team All-Pro nod every year from 2016 through his final campaign. The waning years of his career proved Kelce was still capable of playing at an elite level while remaining an integral part of the Eagles’ offensive front. Instead of pursuing a 14th campaign and the chance at a third Super Bowl appearance (and second championship), though, he will hang up his cleats and turn his attention elsewhere.

Kelce ranks second on the franchise’s all-time games played list with 193, just behind fellow ‘Core Four’ member Brandon Graham. The latter’s future is in question, although he and right tackle Lane Johnson have stated a desire to play in 2024. The final member of the illustrious quartet – defensive tackle Fletcher Cox – is believed to be leaning toward hanging up his cleats at some point this offseason. Regardless of what happens with the other Philadelphia mainstays, Kelce’s absence will be acutely felt.

Over each of the past three years, he and the Eagles have worked out one-year contracts knowing a retirement decision would looming in relatively short order. Kelce’s latest pact is set up so he can remain on the team’s roster beyond June 1 before being placed on the retirement list. Once that procedural move takes place, Philadelphia will begin a new era under center. Cam Jurgens – who was drafted in 2022 as Kelce’s successor and played at right guard in 2023 – could move to center with the sizable challenge of replacing a franchise icon.

“It has always been a goal of mine to play my whole career in one city,” Kelce said during his press conference, via ESPN’s Tim McManus“I couldn’t have dreamt a better one if I tried.”

Kelce will walk away from the game with more than $85MM in career earnings. His next endeavor will be worth following closely, especially if he elects to try his hand at broadcasting in 2024 or down the road. In any event, a spot in Canton no doubt awaits him with his playing career now in the books.

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