Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid has laughed off his in-game altercation with Travis Kelce after the side’s overtime Super Bowl 58 triumph over the San Francisco 49ers, revealing the tight end simply wanted to be brought on the field.
Pictures showed Kelce, 34, the partner of singer-songwriter sensation Taylor Swift, throwing Reid off balance while barking in the 65-year-old’s face as the Chiefs struggled to build momentum in a cagey first half in Las Vegas.
Reid had decided to remove Kelce in a play that saw Isiah Pacheco fumble in the end zone and the tight end’s frustration boiled over, with Jerick McKinnon forced to pull his team-mate away.
The Chiefs went on to secure their third Super Bowl in five years in dramatic fashion as Patrick Mahomes threw a walk-touchdown to Mecole Hardman to make it 25-22 in overtime.
Heading into the clash, the 49ers were widely deemed as the slight favourites and twice came close to getting over the line before a late field goal from Harrison Butker levelled the score at 19-19 to force overtime.
Mahomes, who finished the game 34 of 46 for 333 yards, became only the sixth quarterback in the history of the NFL to lift three or more Super Bowls. Meanwhile, Reid became the fifth coach to succeed in three or more.
Speaking to the media shortly after the win, Reid lifted the lid on his altercation with Kelce and joked the tight end had hit him with a ‘cheap shot’.
‘He caught me off balance, I wasn’t watching. Cheap shot! That’s alright, he did good!’ Reid said.
‘He was really coming over just to go, “Put me in, I’ll score!”, so that’s really what it was.
‘Well I love that. It’s not the first time. Listen, I appreciate him.’
Reid earlier told CBS: ‘He keeps me young. [My balance is] not so good!
‘He tested that hip out! He caught me off balance.
‘Normally, I’d give him a little bit but I didn’t have my feet under me.’
Kelce played down the significance of the altercation and jested that he was simply telling his coach how much he ‘loved’ him.
‘You guys saw that?!’ he told ESPN
‘Man, I’m going to keep that between us unless my Mic’d Up tells the world, but I was just telling him how much I love him! [laughs]’
Addressing the media later on, an emotional Kelce said he owed his whole career to the ‘unbelievable’ Reid.
‘I’ve got the greatest coach this world has ever seen,’ Kelce said.
‘He’s unbelievable, not only in having everyone prepared. He’s one of the best leaders of men that I’ve ever seen in my life.
‘He’s helped me a lot with channeling that emotion, channeling that passion and I owe my entire career to that guy and being able to control how emotional I get and I just love him, man.’
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