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Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce sees his hometown Cleveland Browns as a major obstacle standing between Kansas City and a third straight Super Bowl appearance. Kelce, who grew up in a Cleveland Suburb, was a guest of Browns receiver Jarvis Landry at his annual Celebrity Softball game over the weekend.
Coming off back-to-back Super Bowl appearances, Kelce heaped praise on the Browns via the Akron Beacon Journal: “They’re definitely a contender, without a doubt. It’s definitely there. Baker [Mayfield] and the gang have upped the ante, made this team an unbelievable team and a team you have to prepare for and take serious. I think that moving forward without a doubt, I can see a lot more playoff games between us, and I’ll just take it one day at a time and hope for it. I think the Browns and Chiefs are definitely neck and neck.”
The All-Pro Kelce should know first-hand whether the Browns are contenders or pretenders. In January’s divisional playoff win he hauled in eight receptions, including a score, versus Cleveland. “It’s impressive to see where they’ve come from and where they are now because it’s a legit contender, and every team’s going to have to bring it,” said Kelce.
Landry, who also scored in the Browns-Chiefs playoff game, welcomes the high expectations bestowed upon the team from Kelce and Browns fans alike: “Why not? It’s something that people always say you should not talk about, but nobody trains, or nobody does what they do to not be a champion. So that’s the standard. So why not talk about it? It’s real. It’s sick to be humble about what everybody is actually chasing.”
The hype train will either come to a screeching halt or keep rumbling along when the Chiefs host the Browns in the season opener for both squads: “What better way than to start off against my hometown team, right? The team that I’ve watched since I was a little kid and I cheered for my entire life,” said Kelce.
FanDuel currently lists the Chiefs as 5.5-point week one favorites over the Browns.