“I think we’re the most dominant team in the National Football League.”
That is what the two-time All-Pro told NBC Sports’ Pro Football Talk after the team’s nailbiting 33-31 win over the Carolina Panthers in Week 9. Kelce’s 10 receptions and 159 yards were a cherry on top to an already dominant season personally, one in which he remains on track to surpass career-bests set in 2018 when he tallied 103 receptions, 1,336 yards and 10 touchdowns.
But if you ask him, there are even bigger things to come for the team in the second half of the season.
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Travis Kelce: ‘I Don’t Plan on Losing Any Time Soon’
It’s no secret that the defending Super Bowl champions are playing the 2020 season with a natural target on their backs, drawing their opponents’ best efforts week in and week out — just ask the Las Vegas Raiders (5-3), the team’s next opponent and the only one to deliver a loss to Kansas City this year.
“We lost to the Raiders [and] in my opinion we shouldn’t have,” Kelce told PFT. “Would’ve, could’ve, should’ve.”
“We haven’t necessarily shown that we’re the big bad wolf, for whatever reason,” said Kelce. “Close games, little things that hurt you I mean in terms of like penalties and missed assignments and things like that. We just gotta keep capitalizing on it. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. We knew coming into this that we were gonna have to build an entire team all over again. We couldn’t hang our hat on what we did last year at all we’re gonna have to work for this.”
While the five-time Pro Bowler is accurate in suggesting that the Chiefs have not looked as buttoned-up as fans became accustomed to in 2019, the team has consistently found a way to win close games despite the general challenges presented by the 2020 season. One thing that should work in Kansas City’s favor going forward is their 17th ranked second half strength of schedule (.492).
Despite both the Raiders and Steelers having a slightly easier path forward, it seems Kelce would agree.
“I always kind of split up the first and the second half by the bye week,” Kelce said. “We got here with one loss and I don’t plan on losing any time soon.”
Chiefs Legend Offers to Pay Kelce’s Celebratory Fine
After leading the Chiefs in receptions this past week, Kelce found himself on the receiving end of a kind gesture from one of the franchise’s all-time greats.
The Chiefs’ star tight end was docked $12,500 by the NFL for his goalpost dunk celebration during Kansas City’s Week 8 victory over the New York Jets, but he may not need to worry about it after Hall of Famer Tony Gonzalez took to Twitter to offer to pay the fine.
While Gonzalez appears to have been a few days late in recognizing the league’s response to Kelce’s “unsportsmanlike misconduct,” which was initially reported on November 7, the considerate offer definitely caught Kelce’s attention.