The Chiefs were wise to give Travis Kelce a raise

It is rare for teams to rip up the remaining years of a player's contract and replace them with other years. It's so rare that there was widespread confusion that Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce's new two-year deal was a two-year extension on his existing deal.

The reality is that, like the Rams did with Aaron Donald two years ago, the Chiefs ripped out the remaining two years and put two new ones in. The Chiefs gave Kelce a $4 million raise for 2024, with no strings attached, pushing him up to $17 million in salary. For 2025, the $17.5 million he is scheduled to receive becomes fully guaranteed on the third day of the 2025 league year.

We were told that the seeds of contract repair were planted during the season. Kelce's representatives expressed their feelings for the Chiefs during the 2023 season.

These sentiments go back to the comments Kelsey made Vanity gallery last summer.

“Managers and agents like to tell me how low my salary is,” Kelsey said at the time. “Anytime I talk about wanting more money, they say, 'Why don't you go to the bosses and ask them?' . . . You see how much money you can make, and yeah, it hits you in the gut a little bit. Makes you think you are Being taken advantage of. I don't know if I had really pressed the gas if I would have gotten what he deserved in quotes.

He didn't have to press the gas With the steadfast. Ali said new Horizons A podcast that holds up isn't his style.

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Although there was never any serious talk about his retirement, the idea that Kelce could graduate to a post-football stage had to at least cross the team's mind. He already makes a great deal of money away from the field. For $13 million, he could have decided it wasn't worth it. He decided on it for $17 million.

Although Kelce has confirmed he will remain with the Chiefs for two years, 2025 falls squarely into the “to be determined” category on both sides. As for Kelsey, if he were offered (say) $30 million to star in an action movie to be shot in Bora Bora from August to November of 2025, he would walk away. For the Chiefs, the three-day period before 2025 salary is guaranteed gives them a chance to make a fair assessment of whether the big slide has begun for Kelce, who turns 35 on Oct. 5.

If the Chiefs don't want to at least keep that option, the entire 2025 salary will be guaranteed from the start. If this were just a matter of financing for next year, the guarantee would have been granted immediately after the next Super Bowl.

It's a clear opportunity for the Chiefs to take stock and make a decision after the season. Kelsey will do it too.

And given the way things have been going for him off the field, opportunity may knock loud enough over the next nine months for him to respond. And open the door. And exit, football stage.

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