Jason Kelce NBC Screen grab: NFL on NBC

Since being selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the sixth round of the 2011 NFL Draft, Jason Kelce has never been a free agent.

That’s about to change.

On Monday, the six-time first-team All-Pro center announced his retirement following his 13-year NFL career. With that, the 36-year-old retiree is now one of the most coveted NFL media free agents in recent memory, the rare ex-player with Hall of Fame credentials whose fame transcends the football field and has already proven that he’s camera ready.

Truth be told, Kelce’s sports media free agency has been underway for nearly two months now.

While Kelce officially announced his retirement on Monday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that he had told teammates following the Eagles’ season-ending playoff loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers that he was hanging ’em up. Although the Cincinnati product downplayed the subject publicly, he proceeded to very much act like someone no longer concerned with playing football.

Trailing only Taylor Swift, and with all due respect to Paul Rudd and ChiefsAholic, Kelce became the world’s second-most famous Kansas City Chiefs fan as he followed his brother’s team’s run to a second consecutive Super Bowl title. That also provided Travis Kelce’s older brother with a convenient opportunity to reportedly meet with executives from ESPN and Fox Sports in Las Vegas in the days leading up to the Chiefs’ Super Bowl victory.

In addition to ESPN and Fox, one would imagine that every NFL-affiliated network will at least express interest in the seven-time Pro Bowl selection, if they haven’t already. NBC would make a lot of sense, as would CBS. And it’s certainly worth noting that the Kelce empire already has a preexisting business relationship with Amazon.

As for what role Kelce will play in the media, the sky is the limit. Between his everyman qualities, Hall of Fame resume and massive levels of fame, it’s easy to envision him on a Sunday morning pregame panel, hosting his own show or even calling a Super Bowl one day.

While Tom Brady might become the most famous NFL broadcaster when he makes his debut for Fox later this year, Kelce won’t be far behind. The only questions left are what he’ll be doing for who. Because if the last two years have taught us anything, it’s that the NFL is the Kelce family’s playground.

And now it’s time for Jason to choose his new toy.

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.