Kelce says he's 100% after ankle surgery, returns to practice field for Chiefs
Patrick Mahomes saw one of his favorite targets and took off.
Soon, the 2018 NFL MVP was jumping on the back of his All-Pro tight end, welcoming Travis Kelce back to the practice field at Chiefs training camp on Wednesday. Kelce had offseason ankle surgery following last season, which caused him to miss all of Kansas City's mandatory and voluntary workouts.
“It’s good to get a sweat in, take the visor off and put a helmet on and get out there and start running around," Kelce said. "As the role I had in the offseason being a player-coach, it’s a lot easier being on the field leading by example than it is to just talk about it. It doesn’t matter how much credibility you have on your resume or what you have done in the past until you go out there and go through the motions."
Entering his seventh season in the league, the 29-year-old has only missed one game in the past five years after missing his entire rookie season due to a knee injury. He said the ankle has been an issue for the past two to three years.
"I wouldn’t say it bothered me to the point where it hindered my game, but it’s just something that was nagging," Kelce said. "Sometimes, here and there in practice, I would roll my ankle just because of how loose the joint was. Other than that though, I was just playing through it."
Now that he's back though, Kelce said he's not slowing down in trying to round into form and follow up a season that saw him rack up career highs in receptions (103), yards (1,336) and touchdowns (10).
"I’m 100 percent flying out there, having fun," Kelce said. "I didn’t have any issues today and if there’s one thing about football, there’s nothing you can do to get ready for what you’re about to encounter out there on that field. It’s just one of those sports where there’s a lot of instinctual decisions, making small micro-decisions when you plan how a guy is coming at you and sometimes you get caught in a bad position."
"He did a nice job," head coach Andy Reid said. "We are easing him back in, right? I thought he moved around well. I didn't see anything lingering from his surgery."