Jason Kelce has signed an extension that will keep him with the Eagles through 2021. Kelce, who was previously considering retirement, is now the highest-paid center in the NFL.

It was rumored that Kelce would strongly consider retirement this offseason, and Kelce himself said he was “season-to-season” after the Eagles were eliminated from the playoffs. Kelce, who will now be under contract with the Eagles until he is 34 years old, is reportedly set to make $11 million per season.

Kelce’s play also backs up his pay; Kelce is largely regarded to as the best center in football. According to ProFootballFocus, Kelce graded as the #1 center in the NFL and didn’t allow a single sack in 2018. Over the past three seasons, Kelce has allowed just nine quarterback hurries and three sacks, while averaging more than 1,000 snaps per season. Kelce has been named first team All-Pro in each of the last two seasons, though he wasn’t selected to the Pro Bowl in 2018.

After officially putting off retirement, Kelce says there were a few factors that made him come back.

“I just love this game. I love our team, I love being a part of it. Those are the things that keep bringing me back,” said Kelce.

Kelce’s commitment through 2021 now solidifies an already-strong Eagles offensive line. Along with Kelce, Lane Johnson, Jordan Mailata and Matt Pryor are all signed through 2021. Brandon Brooks is signed through 2020, while Jason Peters, Isaac Seumalo, Halapoulivaati Vaitai, and Stefen Wisniewski are entering the final year of their contract. Peters is reportedly considering retirement, however Howie Roseman expressed a strong desire to retain the left tackle, regardless of his cap hit.

Kelce was drafted in the sixth round in 2011, and was considered to be too small for an offensive lineman. Despite what the critics said, Kelce has not only transformed himself into one of the best offensive lineman in all of football, but also as one of the most beloved players in Philadelphia Eagles history.

Kelce helped fuel the underdog mentality during the Eagles’ Super Bowl run in 2017, and his memorable speech at the championship parade was the perfect icing on the cake.

Kelce is staying in Philadelphia, and he will surely be chasing another opportunity to give another legendary speech on the “Rocky Steps” in his Mummers outfit.

Photo: John David Mercer/USA Today Sports
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