As the 2023 NFL regular season enters its pivotal stages, the discourse surrounding the "Tush Push" -- a rugby-style quarterback sneak that has been central to the Philadelphia Eagles' dominance over the past two seasons -- has continued to suggest that the play is not long for pro football. The Eagles' Tush Push is squarely in the crosshairs of the NFL's Competition Committee, with a recent report by The Athletic suggesting that commissioner Roger Goodell wants the play done away with entirely.
Given that they made the play nearly impossible to stop, members of the Eagles -- from head coach Nick Sirianni on down -- have taken a defiant tone when pressed on whether or not the Tush Push should be a legal play. And on the latest "New Heights" podcast, All-Pro Eagles center Jason Kelce took that exact tone in saying that he was past the point of the debate while almost daring the NFL to outlaw Philadelphia's most successful play.
"Listen, ban it. I really, at this point, I don't care," Kelce said. "I'm over the discussion about it."
In theory, the outlawing of the Tush Push -- which has been less successful elsewhere around the league and also carries significant injury risk -- would force NFL teams to stick to traditional quarterback sneaks where the quarterback follows his blockers, as opposed to being pushed forward from behind. But in the case of Philadelphia, it isn't as though they weren't successful with orthodox quarterback sneaks before they began using the Tush Push as a virtually automatic means of crossing the line of scrimmage.
As Kelce pointed out, the Eagles -- who have boasted an elite offensive line for most of the past 10 years -- were very effective in running quarterback sneaks before. And whatever happens to the Tush Push, Kelce intimated that the Eagles will continue to be successful with quarterback sneaks in the future.
"We were really good at running the quarterback sneak before we did the push. I don't think that it's a necessary part for it. It certainly helps, there's no question about it," Kelce said. "I don't have the energy to care about whether it gets banned or not. We're gonna run it right now because we're good at it and it's effective. And whatever they do next season, we'll figure out a way to do something at a high level and make it effective."
It remains to be seen whether or not the 36-year-old Kelce, a veteran of 13 NFL seasons, will be a part of figuring out how to run quarterback sneaks in the future. While Kelce's capabilities as an all-time great center in NFL history have greatly aided the effectiveness of the Tush Push, he has left the matter of his playing future open-ended while the Eagles have worked to figure out a succession plan for the aging franchise greats along both their offensive and defensive lines.