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Travis Kelce’s Last Name Isn’t Pronounced The Way You Think

Travis Kelce is used to making headlines — especially over the past few months — for a few reasons.The first reason being that he’s one of the best tight ends in the NFL, and the second, of course, is for his whirlwind relationship with global pop star Taylor Swift. But his most recent reason for making headlines has both football fans and Swifties’ heads spinning over the revelation that Travis Kelce’s last name isn’t pronounced the way you’ve thought this whole time.

Yeah, you heard it right. Kelce’s Kansas City Chiefs teammate, defensive tackle, Chris Jones, randomly dropped a huge tidbit about Kelce’s last name while on the sidelines during the Miami Dolphins game on Jan. 13. During a clip shown on Inside the NFL, Jones was conversing with teammates when he said, “So y’all know it’s not even Travis Kel-see? It’s Travis Kels. F*cking crazy, right?”

I’m sitting here and spiraling about how everyone, from the media to die-hard fans, have been mispronouncing one of their favorite players’ names for years. But then I realize that this news is not new information — both Travis and Jason Kelce addressed this topic on their New Heights podcast nearly a year ago. 

The 26th episode of the brothers’ podcast was a special one, where they got to chat with both parents — Ed and Donna Kelce — about how they balance their chaotic lives of balancing both sons playing in the NFL. During the podcast, Jason Kelce straight-up asked their dad why he let everyone mispronounce their last name.

“Why in the world did you change your name out of nowhere and now we are Kel-see?” Jason asked. “Let’s talk about it. Why did we think that our name was Kel-see for the first 24 years… 27 years of my life, 25 of Trav’s?” Ed Kelce didn’t even hesitate when responding with, “I got tired of correcting people.” 

“That’s a good reason to stop,” Jason joked with his dad and brother. “That’s as good as I’ve heard. So you changed your entire family’s name over generations because you were tired of correcting people.”

After eliciting laughs from both Ed and Travis, Jason further asked Ed why he let his sons think their last name was always pronounced as “Kel-see.” His dad said, “Because your mother thought it was Kelce.”

When asked by Jason if his sons should go by “Kels” or “Kelce,” Ed answered simply with, “Do whatever you want. I did.” To finish off the segment, Travis said he’d go by either pronunciation of his last name, while his brother Jason had an opposing opinion, “I’m going by ‘Kel-see,’ don’t call me ‘Kels.’”

As for me, I will listen to Jason, because “Kel-see” just has a better ring to it.

Brooklyn Frederes is a Her Campus Writer for the Culture and Entertainment section. She writes content about a range of topics, such as pop culture, beauty, fashion, relationships, and self-help. Brooklyn recently graduated from the University of Iowa with a bachelor's degree in Journalism and English with a publishing track, where she focused on fiction and creative writing. She also was a writer and editor for the University of Iowa's Her Campus Chapter, writing and reflecting on personal experiences. In her free time, you can find Brooklyn reading romance novels, brainstorming book ideas, binging time period dramas, spending her money on makeup and skincare products, or hanging out with her sisters. She also is a day-one Swiftie who loves talking about anything Taylor Swift related and obsesses over her music.