Travis Kelce was absolutely crushed by Chargers safety Derwin James on Thursday night – and the strike came just days after Kelce complimented him and eerily hinted at his fate.
As Kelce broke loose for an 18-yard gain to set the Chiefs up for the three with a first-and-goal, James picked up the 250-pound tight end and rammed it into the ground.
The fierce tackle was almost reminiscent of a WWE move and resulted in Kelce losing the ball after it hit the ground, although it wasn’t counted as a fumble and Kansas City retained possession.
While Kelce may have been enthralled by the play, he wouldn’t have been overly surprised by James’ strength when he gushed over him earlier this week.
‘Durwin James, man. He’s an absolute beast on defense, I have a lot of respect for him,” Kelce said on his New Heights show, which he co-hosts with brother (and Eagles center) Jason Kelce.
“Both in pass coverage and just throwing his weight around. A lot of security guys out here throwing their weight around, but he’s one of the bigger guys that can actually put the wood down, man.
And his brother Jason, a four-time All-Pro, also had plenty of praise to offer.
“I saw him absolutely crush offensive linemen,” the center said.
“He hits harder than most linebackers in the league.”
The goal against Kelce was one of nine tackles for James that night – including one for a loss – as he and the Chargers lost 27-24 to the Chiefs.
Kelce was a bit quiet for his high standards as the three-time All-Pro was held for 51 yards on five catches.
The two teams won’t face each other again until November 20th (Week 11), so Kelce has some time to watch James from a safe distance.
“He’s one of my favorite football players,” he said, “except when we’re playing him.”