The Eagles avalanche of contract signings kept humming along Thursday morning, as the franchise decided to lock up center Jason Kelce for the long-term.
League source confirms: Kelce deal 6 years, $37.5M, $13M guaranteed.
— Geoff Mosher (@GeoffMosherCSN) February 27, 2014
In addition to the final deal on his current contract, Kelce could stay in Philadelphia for the next seven seasons. Kelce will be among the top-five highest paid centers in the league, and deservedly so. Even having not been selected to the 2013 Pro Bowl, the third-year center out of Cincinnati was like another quarterback on the field for the Eagles and their record-breaking success had as much to do with him as any other player on the field.
The deal will make Kelce among the league’s top-five highest paid centers. In addition to his skill on the field, Kelce’s value almost exceeds that in the locker room. He is often brought up among the team’s leadership core, and was named the recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award in 2013, an award decided on by the team. Given his spectacular recovery from a season-ending knee injury early in the 2012 season, its easy to see why his teammates look upon Kelce with such high-regard.
A healthy Kelce flourished in 2013. According to the site Pro Football Focus, he graded out as the highest at his position over the 16-game season. Considering he was a 6th round draft pick in what is widely considered one of the worst Eagles drafts in this century, it’s a wonder that Kelce has turned into such a franchise cornerstone.
The Eagles continue to solidify their offense by keeping several of their mainstays in-house. Kelce joins Jason Peters and Riley Cooper as players having been extended by the team, and many speculate Jeremy Maclin will receive a contract soon enough.