Chiefs TE Travis Kelce: "You know the hype that comes along with the Chiefs and Raiders"


Q: What are your thoughts heading into the rematch with the Raiders this weekend?

Kelce:"...Knowing that they kind of upset us and ruined the end of the year last season for us, or end of the run that we had going into the end of the season last time, and knowing that this is a good football team. Besides their record, they have a lot of great players. It's Charles [Woodson]'s last game, so you know they're going to bring something else to the table for him."

Q: That last game here in Oakland, the Raiders gave you guys a good game until some turnovers in the fourth quarter. What were your thoughts during that game?

Kelce:"After looking at the film, you've got to give hats off to how they played us and how they schemed us up. When it comes to the end of the season, it's all about fundamentals. It's all about the turnover battle. It's all about the fundamental battle in the interior line, even on the outside with the receivers going up against DBs. That's what Coach Reid just wants us to focus on this week, is getting back to the fundamentals – catching, tackling, blocking – use what we're doing in practice to really propel us on Sundays."


Q: You guys are on an incredible run of nine straight wins and you have had to win the close games to do that. What do you attribute this run to? **

Kelce:"You would have to say just believing in each other, just coming together when we need to, making plays when we have to when it's all said and done and the ball is in the air, going up and knocking that thing down like Dee Ford did against the Chargers. There are just other examples, going up and making the catch on third-and-long late in the game. It's those little things that have got us the wins and we're going to have to keep relying on those things to pull out wins in the end."

Q: When you look at the history of the rivalry between the Raiders and Chiefs, is this a game where you throw the records out and it's a hard-nose, knock them to the ground kind of football?

Kelce:"Without a doubt. You're going to get the support from both fan bases going into that week no matter what the records are for either team. Either way it's going to be a crazy game. You know that as a player going into it, you know the hype that comes along with the Chiefs and Raiders..."

Q: What's it been like playing with Alex Smith this season? What kind of quarterback has he been for you guys?

Kelce:"He's been everything. Alex has done an amazing job taking on the role of a 1-5 football team to bring us to where we are now. He's our leader on the offensive end and as he goes, we go. That's awesome because Alex is ready to go at all times. His preparation during the week is like none other I've ever seen, and that just makes it easier to play with him because you know he's accountable on every aspect."

Q: What kind of challenge does the Raiders' defense present for you?

Kelce:"You have to look at more than just players. The scheming, they have very good coaches over there that understand what Andy Reid is trying to do. They've matched up quite a bit the past couple of years. That being said, you're playing a whole team. You know you're going to get everybody on the same page. With that being said, you just have to go out there and make plays. It's going to be tight quarters; you're not just going to be wide open like you would in other games. Their coaches get them and there's accountability in the players' locker room that you can tell just on film because they all know what they're doing. Just going out there and making plays when plays need to be made like we've been doing all year, be the playmakers that we are."

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