Home Homepage Latest Stories Jason Kelce’s Retirement Speech Is A Perfect Example Of Healthy Masculinity

Jason Kelce’s Retirement Speech Is A Perfect Example Of Healthy Masculinity

by Colin Luderitz

The opinion pieces expressed in this publication, The Montclarion, are those of the author(s). They do not claim to reflect the opinions or views of The Montclarion, other than Editorials written by The Montclarion Editorial Board staff.

Future hall-of-fame center Jason Kelce, of the Philadelphia Eagles, retired this Monday, March 4. It was a bittersweet ending to a legendary career and much like every other time, Kelce has found himself in front of the microphone, his speech announcing his retirement was nothing short of perfection.

It was funny, down-to-earth, but above all, it was gracious. Kelce has become the face of the Philadelphia Eagles over the course of his 13-year long career, a fanbase known for its brash, take-no-prisoners attitude in a sport known for its intense violence, but Kelce’s speech was neither of those things. It was humble, quiet and vulnerable in ways that typically are not expected from such a figure.

From the second he took the podium, Kelce’s demeanor was much more low-key than what is typically seen from the player. He hung up the Mummer suit of his legendary Super Bowl Parade speech in favor of a simple tank top and sweats. His typical growling baritone voice was much softer by comparison. Nearly from the second he started speaking, he began to cry.

It is clear that Kelce has immense pride in his career, but not once in his speech did it come off as arrogance. He took us through all 13 years of his time in Philadelphia, recalling the highs, like winning the Super Bowl, and the lows, like the epic collapse the team suffered at the end of this past season. He thanked everyone who had a hand in his career, from the four head coaches he played under, to the cafeteria staff, to the general manager Howie Roseman, as well as immense praise for his wife, Kylie Kelce.

He thanked the fans of Philadelphia, even though many may argue that they themselves are thankless. He praised their honesty and candor throughout his time, while acknowledging that not every athlete is built for the city’s intensity.

Although the speech was solemn, it was not without humor. Kelce’s recounting of the iconic “Philly Special,” the greatest play in Super Bowl history, was hilarious, taking into account the size of quarterback Nick Foles’ penis, and the size of head coach Doug Pederson’s testicles.

All of these paint a picture of exactly what masculinity can be.

Never once throughout this speech did Kelce abandon who he is, but in that same vein, he was never disrespectful. He spread immense love with every word. Even when recounting the unfortunate lows his career did have, he made it clear he would never trade a second of that time.

I will not pretend to personally know Kelce. He might actually be a total jerk in real life. This speech may very well have been highly-calculated by a tireless public relations firm. But, in isolation, the values on display in this retirement speech are ideals that many should strive to follow.

We can all stand to revel in the good times, even when the bad times creep through. We can all take the time to thank others, rather than pretend our accomplishments are singular actions.

Kelce has certainly earned his place on the “Mount Rushmore” of the Philadelphia Eagles, up there with legends like Brian Dawkins or the aforementioned Foles, and this speech is just another showcase as to why. Philly will never forget their very own Sexy Batman.

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