Super Bowl LVII: Four things to know about brothers/opponents Jason and Travis Kelce
Jason Kelce fired the first shot.
"Officially done being a Chiefs fan this season!!" the Eagles center tweeted Sunday after his younger brother, Travis, and the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC championship game to advance to Super Bowl LVII.
The Chiefs' opponent? Big brother's Eagles, of course. They defeated the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game earlier in the day to punch their ticket to Glendale, Ariz., for the Feb. 12 showdown.
Officially done being a Chiefs fan this season!!
— Jason Kelce (@JasonKelce) January 30, 2023
There are sure to be many more shots fired by the brothers between now and then. It's the first time brothers have played on opposing Super Bowl teams, which definitely will make their "New Heights" podcast a must-listen in the weeks to come.
"Somebody is going to go home a loser, and neither one of them lose very well," their mother, Donna, told WJW-TV in Cleveland.
The Chiefs are 2-0 against the Eagles when both Kelces are playing. Here are some more fun facts about the brothers.
Started from the bottom (or thereabouts)
Between them, Jason and Travis have been selected to 14 Pro Bowls. As of Feb. 12, they will have five Super Bowl appearances and, by the end of that night, three Super Bowl wins. They are considered to be future Hall of Famers, but it wasn't always that way.
Jason (born Nov. 5, 1987) was a running back and linebacker at Cleveland Heights (Ohio) High and a walk-on running back at the University of Cincinnati, where he switched to the offensive line after redshirting his first year. He was drafted by the Eagles in the sixth round in 2011 and selected to the first of his six Pro Bowls in 2015.
Travis (born Oct. 5, 1989) was a star quarterback at Cleveland Heights and a two-star recruit who chose to attend Cincinnati with his brother out of multiple scholarship offers.
Travis mentioned their humble football beginnings while taking about their father, Ed, during a post-Super Bowl interview in 2020:
"My brother was a walk-on, I was a two-star. Our entire lives, man, it feels like for [Ed] that we never got enough [recognition] for who we are, and he's got two kids that not only made it to the league but won two Super Bowls for him."
We pronounce their name incorrectly (but so do they)
During the summer of 2021 — when the Kelce brothers were 10 Pro Bowl selections, three Super Bowl appearances and two Super Bowl wins into their NFL careers — Travis dropped a bombshell during a podcast interview.
"My real name is ‘Kelss,’" he said on an episode of "Bussin’ With the Boys," causing a minor uproar with NFL fans worried we had been mispronouncing the name for a decade.
Technically speaking, that's exactly what we had been doing (and continue to do) — because that's how they pronounce it.
Both brothers ended up elaborating on the matter. Turns out, the proper pronunciation is "Kelss," but Jason and Travis always have gone by "Kel-see" because of a change their father made earlier in his life.
"My dad, at some point when he was working in the steel mills in Cleveland, Ohio, got tired of correcting everybody who was calling him 'Kel-see,'" Jason told SportsRadio 94WIP in Philadelphia. "Apparently, the correct pronunciation, the standard pronunciation is 'Kelss.' That’s what the rest of the family goes by. So, my dad, out of pure laziness completely changed his last name. And now, I think we’re at the point where we’re both riding with 'Ed Kel-see.' He’s, for some reason, decided to change it and that’s what we’ve gone by our whole lives."
They've got the music in them (kind of)
Jason lent his soothing baritone to the "A Philly Special Christmas" album, which was released in December and benefits the Children's Crisis Treatment Center in Philadelphia. He and fellow Eagles offensive lineman Jordan Mailata and Lane Johnson, and various special guests, offer their renditions of seven holiday classics on a serious album produced by the War on Drugs drummer Charlie Hall. While Mailata clearly has the best voice of the bunch, Kelce doesn't embarrass himself.
Jason also played baritone sax in various high school bands.
We're not sure how much of a musical background Travis has, but hip-hop star Post Malone is said to have the Chiefs tight end's autograph (as well as that of Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes) tattooed somewhere on his body.
We're in for a memorable (and NSFW) speech, no matter who wins
Days after the Eagles' victory in Super Bowl LII, Jason donned a Mummers outfit and bellowed out a NSFW (not safe for work) victory speech for the ages until he had little voice left.
"You want to talk about an underdog? You want to talk about a hungry dog? For 52 years you’ve been starved of this championship," he shrieked. "Everybody wonders why we’re so mean. Everybody wonders why the Philadelphia Eagles’ fans aren’t the nicest fans. If I don’t eat breakfast, I’m ... pissed off!"
Two years later, after the Chiefs' win in Super Bowl LIV, Travis followed in his big brother's footsteps (sans Mummers costume) with a speech that included screamed Beastie Boys lyrics, funny noises and blown raspberries so intense that his teammates likely were glad they wore goggles for the occasion.
“Twenty-one years, that’s how long it’s just been turning for my guy Andy Reeeeid, uhhhhhhnnnn," he yelled. "It’s just been turrrnin’, and turrrnin’ and TURNINNNNN’! AND WHAT WE DO?! WHAT WE DO?! WE UNLEASH A CAN OF WHOOPASS ON EVERYBODY!”
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.