I guess you could say that Travis Kelce is having a hard time shaking off his team's loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday. Kelce has played in 19 career games against the Denver Broncos. After losing the first three matchups he played in against Denver, Kelce and the Chiefs ripped off a whopping 15 straight (16 in total) games in which Kelce played before losing in Denver on Sunday by a final score of 24-9.
When Kelce heard his older brother read off the score on their podcast New Heights, he immediately just responded, "F***ing embarrassing."
The way he said it could easily come across as though Kelce was embarrassed to finally lose to Denver again, a team the Chiefs have dominated for the last eight straight years, but I think Kelce was simply embarrassed to lose a game like that without his team scoring a touchdown. And frankly, the Chiefs put forth a rather embarrassing performance, something the Broncos can relate to as far as these matchups go in recent years.
For once, it wasn't the Broncos with both forced and unforced errors. In this particular matchup, it was the Chiefs and their total of five turnovers that ultimately, they couldn't overcome.
You can listen to Kelce and make your own determinations as far as the tone Kelce is taking here and whether his "embarrassed" comment is a shot at the Broncos as an opponent, but he does credit Denver for being the more hungry team and the team with more energy in this particular matchup.
If you're a Broncos fan, the 10 minutes Jason and Travis Kelce spend talking about the Chiefs' loss on Sunday is just glorious content. It's exactly the type of salt in the wound you love when you're talking about a division rivalry. Yes, Frank Clark, I guess the "rivalry" is back on.
Yes, it's just one game, but sadly, it's a truly historic one. This was the first time the Broncos had beaten the Chiefs in nearly 3,000 days. This was the first time they had ever beaten Patrick Mahomes as an opponent in 13 opportunities through the years.
The Chiefs are 6-2, so you know Kelce is being really hard on himself with the way he's talking about the game in that podcast. And rightfully so. When you're a team with championship aspirations and standards, losing a game like this can send you into a bit of a tailspin if you let it. When the Denver Broncos had Peyton Manning on the roster and playing at an MVP level, any individual loss felt like the world was caving in on the team.
You just expected those teams from 2012-14 to win every game, and then there was just something magical about 2015...
But even if it's a distant memory at this point, we can empathize with Travis Kelce as fans of a team that expects to dominate, especially against an opponent you feel like you should beat. The Broncos had a pretty insane stretch of dominance against the Raiders when Peyton Manning was the quarterback, and the loss to the Raiders late in the 2015 season felt like a rock-bottom, almost defining moment for the team.
Unfortunately, the Chiefs have been on a similar stretch of winning against the Broncos. Until Sunday, that is...
For those who have been watching long enough, Sunday's win against the Chiefs felt like when the Broncos first beat Peyton Manning when he was still a member of the Colts (and yes, that happened effectively just one time, in 2003). It felt like when the Broncos were able to get the best of Tom Brady in the playoffs back in 2005, handing Brady his first-ever playoff loss. It felt like when the team absolutely dominated Aaron Rodgers in a 2015 regular season matchup.
I know that seems hyperbolic, but that's how bad it's been against Kansas City, and that's how good this win truly feels in Broncos Country. But even though this was just a regular season win and the Broncos are only 3-5, a big win at home against these Kansas City Chiefs could do wonders for Denver. Listening to Travis Kelce speak, you can't help but wonder if the loss to the Broncos is going to send the Chiefs into a further tailspin, or if they are going to galvanize and that loss will end up actually being a turning point for them for the better.
Broncos fans certainly aren't hoping for the latter.
No matter what happens the rest of this season, the win against the Chiefs and the fact that the Broncos allowed just 28 points to Kansas City in two matchups (within a three-week span) are huge long-term takeaways for this team. Perhaps the win against Kansas City can spark something for the Broncos as well. After all, head coach Sean Payton declared after the win, "We're going to be in bigger games than that."