After a breakout 2014 season,
Kelce caught 67 passes for 862 yards and five touchdowns a year ago and figures to be even more of an integral part of Kansas City's offense.
As a result, Kelce wants to raise the bar and set a higher standard for his personal output this season.
“Nobody puts more expectation on me than myself," Kelce said, via ESPN.com. “That’s just the heart of the competitor. That’s how I was raised. My father taught me that you can buy a man’s back, but you can’t buy his heart. With that being said, I come out here and make sure I put all my effort and focus into being the best player I can be."
Reid believes that the best is yet to come for Kelce.
“You’d think the natural progression would be even more and better, and he was pretty good last year,” Reid said. “He’s tremendously talented, loves to play the game. He’s like a little kid out there. He loves to play.”
Despite the high praise from Reid, the coach knows that there is still room for improvement for the 25-year-old.
“You could see the progress every week in a positive direction,” Reid said. “We kept adding to his menu there, so the plays we wanted to dial up in formations and motions, the running backs and tight ends, they have to know what they’re doing with those. So he continually got better with that as time went on."
After recording no stats as a rookie due to being placed on injured reserve, Kelce tallied 67 receptions for 862 yards and five touchdowns in 2014, all were team-highs.
“Last year, it was a month before (training camp before I could) finally start running routes,” Kelce told the Kansas City Star, referring to the left knee injury that essentially wiped out his rookie season in 2013. “You can only learn so much in the meeting room before you actually have to go out there and do your job.
“This year, I’ve got an entire season under my belt. I’m much more confident, much more durable in terms of my health. It’s going to be fun to play in front of this KC crowd.”
The Chiefs released veteran tight end Anthony Fasano, who caught 25 passes for 226 yards and four touchdowns last year, so Kelce could be an every-down player this fall.
“(Coach Andy) Reid always says next man up," Kelce told the paper. "I was drafted in the third round two years ago to be a tight end in this offense. No matter what happens I’ll be ready, whether I’m the main guy on every single play or a side (option) that helps us get the ball down the field.”
Kelce's touchdown was his first since Week 9 and came on a 20-yard play where the tight end lined up wide right and caught a short cross over the middle of the field, bouncing off multiple defenders en route to the end zone. He also lost a fumble for the second straight game and now has three lost fumbles in his last five games. Nevertheless, Kelce is up to 56 receptions, 747 yards and five touchdowns going into a Week 16 matchup with the Steelers.
Kelce, who hasn't scored since Week 9, paced Kansas City in targets. His longest gainer went 29 yards. He'll play the Raiders in Week 15.
|2013||Kansas City Chiefs||1||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0||0|
|2014||Kansas City Chiefs||16||11||67||862||12.9||34||5||15||0||45|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2013||Kansas City Chiefs||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|2014||Kansas City Chiefs||16||4||3||0||1||0||0||1||1|
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