Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes tried to ‘force’ Travis Kelce to play in hopes of him achieving milestone

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Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce was just 16 yards short of reaching the 1,000-yard receiving mark for 2023 as his streak of seven consecutive seasons hitting the mark came to an end.

But it wasn’t for lack of trying.

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Tight end Travis Kelce with quarterback Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs prior to the Los Angeles Chargers game at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California, on Sunday, Jan. 7, 2024. (Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images)

Patrick Mahomes said in a radio interview on Tuesday he tried to convince Kelce to play and hit the mark in the Chiefs’ season finale against the Los Angeles Chargers. Kelce was deactivated to rest for the playoffs as the Chiefs will play the Miami Dolphins in the first round.

“It’s the type of teammate he is – in all honesty I was trying to force him to play,” the star quarterback said on 610 Sports Radio. “I knew he was going to try not to play, and he wanted to be about the team and not about him. I was trying to force him all the way up until game time, and then he said, ‘No that’s not who I am, I don’t want to play for those reasons. I want to get myself rested and healthy for the playoffs.’”

Patrick Mahomes leads the charge

Patrick Mahomes leads the Kansas City Chiefs out of the tunnel before the Los Angeles Chargers game at SoFi Stadium on Jan. 7, 2024. (Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

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Mahomes said the Chiefs had some plays ready for Kelce to hit the milestone mark, but he refused to do anything like that and wasn’t going to play for those reasons.

Kelce was dealing with a neck injury. He was limited in practice throughout the week leading up to the Chargers game.

As of Tuesday, he wasn’t listed on the injury report.

Travis Kelce runs

Travis Kelce of the Chiefs runs onto the field for the Cincinnati Bengals game at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium on Dec. 31, 2023, in Kansas City, Missouri. (Ryan Kang/Getty Images)

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The Chiefs and Dolphins square off at Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday night. Temperatures are expected to be in single digits around game time.

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