There’s no video. None that’s been published, at least.
But things apparently got real testy at a joint practice between the Philadelphia Eagles and Indianapolis Colts on Tuesday. Jason Kelce was at the center of it.
According to multiple reports, Kelce took exception to a hit that Colts linebacker Zaire Franklin put on Eagles running back Kenneth Gainwell. The All-Pro Eagles center then “plowed” Franklin “into the ground, igniting a fracas, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Josh Tolentino. Per the report, “every single player [was] on the field in a huge scuffle.”
Thus concluded Tuesday’s practice.
Kelce: ‘It was a cheap shot’
Kelce addressed his role in the incident with reporters after the dust settled. Even he thinks that he was out of line.
“Tensions got the better of me,” Kelce said. “We try and keep things civil on the field, and for me, I pride myself on being a guy that sustains the emotions and level of play out there. I let my emotions get the better of me. That certainly doesn’t belong out there on the field, and a little bit ashamed that it got to that level, that I did what I did. Certainly, not happy about that.
“I think very highly of the guys who were out there, particularly 44 Zaire. I think he’s a tremendous player. I think all of their guys up front, they brought a lot of intensity to the day, which made practice intense. I didn’t handle things properly.”
He went as far as to call his hit on Franklin a “cheap shot.”
“I want to reiterate that that’s not something that I should have done or should happen out there. It was a cheap shot.”
What does Franklin think? He’s a Philadelphia native who watched Kelce play for his hometown Eagles before he joined the NFL. He’s not mad. He’s just disappointed.
“When you have joint practices against other organizations, sometimes your speed ain’t their speed,” Franklin said. “People get offended. That’s life.
“Growing up in Philly, watching him for a long time — lot of respect for him. Talked to him a little bit after we played them last year. I thought the OGs would at least look me in the eye before, but it’s all good.
“I might get a chance to look him in the eye Thursday, so we’ll be OK.”
How’s that for a tease to a preseason game? The Colts and Eagles will square off in the preseason finale for each team on Thursday at 6 p.m. ET.
Starters traditionally don’t play in the final week of preseason, so it’s unlikely we’ll see Franklin and Kelce face off on the field. But there will be plenty of players from both sides on the field looking to make an impression ahead of roster cutdowns.