PHOENIX (AP) — It’s difficult enough to feed two regular-sized teenage boys, much less a pair such as Travis and Jason Kelce.
One dedicated momma made it happen. Donna Kelce said on Thursday before the “NFL Honors” show that she did her best to keep up with her two sons’ voracious appetites, but it was easier said than done.
“The refrigerator was always packed, but it didn’t last more than a day or so,” she said. “Whole chickens, they would eat lots of pork, ribs. I’d have leftovers in the refrigerator and it never lasted past the day.
“When they left for college, I got a raise.”
All that eating eventually paid off. Travis is now a star tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs while Jason is the longtime starting center for the Philadelphia Eagles. The brother-on-brother matchup in Super Bowl 57 on Sunday in Glendale, Arizona, is the first in the championship game’s history.
Donna and her husband, Ed, have mostly kept private over the years, but she’s become a minor celebrity as she crisscrosses the country to watch her boys — often in a jersey with Travis’ front stitched to Jason’s back.
More than 150,000 fans signed a petition for the NFL to have her do the Super Bowl coin toss, but she said in a social media post that the NFL already had someone in place.
She looked at ease on the red carpet on Thursday night, chatting with anyone who wanted to talk about her remarkable family.
“I just go where I’m told,” Kelce said, grinning.
GRONK SURPRISED BRADY’S DONE
Count Rob Gronkowski among those surprised that longtime quarterback Tom Brady has decided to retire.
“I was just surprised a little bit because I know he can play until he’s 50 years old, 100%” Gronkowski told the AP on Thursday. “He takes care of his body to the ‘T.’ He’s such a professional. He knows the game of football like no other. So, to have about five more years left of him and to see him retire was just a little shocking, but I’m very happy for him, man.”
Gronkowski and Brady sit second all time for regular-season touchdown combinations. Gronkowski, a four-time Super Bowl champion, caught 90 regular-season touchdown passes from Brady in his career and earned several accolades with Brady as his quarterback, including five Pro Bowl appearances and four first-team All-Pro selections.
“I’m wishing nothing but happiness for Tom,” Gronkowski said. “He definitely deserves it. He definitely did his duties — double, double the amount. He deserves some time off now, that’s for sure.”
“CURSE” OF KURT WARNER
Former quarterback Kurt Warner is the last quarterback to win the regular-season MVP and the Super Bowl in the same season.
That was the 1999 season. After that, the next nine players to win the MVP and then appear in the Super Bowl have an 0-9 record.
“I’m aware of that,” Warner said. “It’s funny you called it a curse, because you know where the curse started? The curse also started with me. I was the last one to do it. Two years later, I won the MVP, went to the Super Bowl and lost.”
Warner said the 0-9 record is proof that football is a team sport and one player can’t carry teams to a championship. That’s why he’s leaning Eagles for his Super Bowl 57 pick.
“I’m leaning toward the Eagles,” Warner said. “I just think top to bottom they’re the better team. It doesn’t guarantee anything — it’s whoever plays better for 60 minutes. But I’m leaning Eagles because they have so many ways to beat you, so many players who can beat you.”
Penn State journalism students Gabe Angieri and Sam Fremin contributed to this report. AP Sports Writer John Marshall contributed to this story.
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