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Is Kelce better than Gronk?

doubledragondoubledragon Posts: 22,911 ✭✭✭✭✭

I was surprised to wake up to find this quote from Skip Bayless on my Twitter feed:

"Travis Kelce has become the greatest route-running, pass-catching tight end ever - yes, beyond even Gronk. Mahomes is a lucky young man."

Comments

  • doubledragondoubledragon Posts: 22,911 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hmm, his cards seem to be selling like hotcakes.

  • thisistheshowthisistheshow Posts: 9,386 ✭✭✭✭✭

    There will be people who might rate sone of the older TEs higher, but of the modern TEs (at a minimum) he is the best complete TE. I think he's the best, but as a Pats fan I'm biased. No other TE combined his production with his blocking. Some people don't care about the blocking aspect, and might rank Kelce higher. But with Gronk on the field, anything was possible.

    The statement by Bayless doesn't address blocking, and regardless is a statement by Bayless (making it invalid). Lol

  • doubledragondoubledragon Posts: 22,911 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 13, 2022 5:36AM

    Travis Kelce's 4 TD game on Monday night is what set this whole debate off, I heard it was like a barfight on Twitter. Here is what Shannon Sharpe said about this:

    Right now, and I've said this before, and I don't have any problem saying this, I believe that Gronk (Rob Gronkowski) is the greatest tight end to have ever played. But the thing that Kelce is going to have is longevity and his numbers are going to dwarf his. Now if he can get a Super Bowl — and that's why I give [it to] Gronk, because Gronk was so dominant — Kelce is equally as dominant, but those four Super Bowls. That's the difference-maker right now.

    If he can get another Super Bowl or two, it's going to be hard for me to put someone in front of him. He's not the greatest currently but I believe when his career is done and he walks away, [he will be] because I believe he still has another two or three years at least in his prime and he's playing with (Patrick) Mahomes.

  • craig44craig44 Posts: 10,506 ✭✭✭✭✭

    My completely biased view is, give me Gronk. definitely a bigger game changer and red zone threat. significantly more TD. better y/c and better blocker. really a game-changing blocker for a TE. It was almost like having an extra OL when he stayed in to block.

    Had he been less difficult to bring down, I think he would have been hurt less. he missed a lot of time from injury and played many games at less than 100%. I dont resort to the eye test very often, but Gronk was a monster on the Gridiron. often took 2-5 defenders to literally drag him down. Kelce seems to drop like a WR when he is tackled.

    Last, before this season, I dont remember of Kelce being the number 1 receiving threat on a team. He had the luxury of having Hill take up double or triple coverage.

    George Brett, Roger Clemens and Tommy Brady.

  • craig44craig44 Posts: 10,506 ✭✭✭✭✭

    To add, Gronk is the all-time greatest at spiking TD's. Kelce cant hold a candle to Gronk when it comes to that.

    George Brett, Roger Clemens and Tommy Brady.

  • perkdogperkdog Posts: 29,464 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Gronk is a better blocker, Kelce is a better route runner and pass catcher

    It depends what your looking for in your TE in regards to your offensive scheme.

    Run heavy I'd take Gronk
    Pass heavy I'd take Kelce

    If I'm forced to make a choice I'm taking Gronk

  • DarinDarin Posts: 6,298 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The quote was "greatest route running, pass catching tight end ever".

    The Chiefs have had two of those better than Gronk, Tony Gonzalez and Travis Kelce.

    DISCLAIMER FOR BASEBAL21
    In the course of every human endeavor since the dawn of time the risk of human error has always been a factor. Including but not limited to field goals, 4th down attempts, or multiple paragraph ramblings on a sports forum authored by someone who shall remain anonymous.
  • perkdogperkdog Posts: 29,464 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Darin said:
    The quote was "greatest route running, pass catching tight end ever".

    The Chiefs have had two of those better than Gronk, Tony Gonzalez and Travis Kelce.

    Your pick

    Gonzalez or Kelce?

  • thisistheshowthisistheshow Posts: 9,386 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Darin said:
    The quote was "greatest route running, pass catching tight end ever".

    The Chiefs have had two of those better than Gronk, Tony Gonzalez and Travis Kelce.

    ...
    Yes, that's the quote, and Kelce is that. He is the greatest route running, pass catching "tight end". He is a "tight end". Gronk is the greatest tight end ever.

  • DarinDarin Posts: 6,298 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 15, 2022 5:08PM

    @Darin said:
    The quote was "greatest route running, pass catching tight end ever".

    The Chiefs have had two of those better than Gronk, Tony Gonzalez and Travis Kelce.

    Your pick

    Gonzalez or Kelce?

    Gonzalez for now.

    DISCLAIMER FOR BASEBAL21
    In the course of every human endeavor since the dawn of time the risk of human error has always been a factor. Including but not limited to field goals, 4th down attempts, or multiple paragraph ramblings on a sports forum authored by someone who shall remain anonymous.
  • DarinDarin Posts: 6,298 ✭✭✭✭✭

    So.......... showtime.

    It seems like since the Pats had the GOAT QB and the GOAT tight end they would have
    hooked up for a lot more receptions than Gronk ended up with, a very pedestrian 621.
    Guess he was busy blocking for that legendary Patriot running game all those years.

    DISCLAIMER FOR BASEBAL21
    In the course of every human endeavor since the dawn of time the risk of human error has always been a factor. Including but not limited to field goals, 4th down attempts, or multiple paragraph ramblings on a sports forum authored by someone who shall remain anonymous.
  • thisistheshowthisistheshow Posts: 9,386 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Darin said:
    So.......... showtime.

    It seems like since the Pats had the GOAT QB and the GOAT tight end they would have
    hooked up for a lot more receptions than Gronk ended up with, a very pedestrian 621.
    Guess he was busy blocking for that legendary Patriot running game all those years.

    ....
    My argument for Gronkowski is that no one did it better at the TE position. But we know that his career was riddled with time missed due to injury. Kelce has him beat all day when it comes to availability, and is also compiling stats at an unprecedented pace.

    But for sure the Pats running game has had many underrated years. Thanks for noticing! 😎

  • craig44craig44 Posts: 10,506 ✭✭✭✭✭

    how many years has Kelce been option number 1? this year, but i am pretty sure he was a number 2 for his other seasons?

    That has to weigh in on both targets and receptions for both players. Years of Hill taking doubles had to open things up for Kelce. There were many times Gronk got the Moss treatment and ended up doubled and more of a decoy opening things up for the 2 and 3 receivers.

    George Brett, Roger Clemens and Tommy Brady.

  • galaxy27galaxy27 Posts: 7,128 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Kelce just turned 33 but doesn't look anywhere close to being done

    let's revisit when he hangs them up

  • thisistheshowthisistheshow Posts: 9,386 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @galaxy27 said:
    Kelce just turned 33 but doesn't look anywhere close to being done

    let's revisit when he hangs them up

    ....
    IMO, there will be nothing to revisit. There is no way for Kelce to be the better tight end. He plays like a wide receiver. Gronk was an absolute beast offensively. Defenses needed to punish him with multiple players to bring him down. And no one was blocking better than Gronk. That's the end of the story. If someone wants to debate that someone else os the greatest, ok. But it can't be Kelce. @darin you need to accept Kelce and his production for what it is. Amazing, top level, never been seen before. He isn't a tight end.

  • galaxy27galaxy27 Posts: 7,128 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @thisistheshow said:

    IMO, there will be nothing to revisit. There is no way for Kelce to be the better tight end.

    spoken like a true, completely biased Gronk/Pats fan

    :D

  • craig44craig44 Posts: 10,506 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @thisistheshow said:

    @galaxy27 said:
    Kelce just turned 33 but doesn't look anywhere close to being done

    let's revisit when he hangs them up

    ....
    IMO, there will be nothing to revisit. There is no way for Kelce to be the better tight end. He plays like a wide receiver. Gronk was an absolute beast offensively. Defenses needed to punish him with multiple players to bring him down. And no one was blocking better than Gronk. That's the end of the story. If someone wants to debate that someone else os the greatest, ok. But it can't be Kelce. @darin you need to accept Kelce and his production for what it is. Amazing, top level, never been seen before. He isn't a tight end.

    As a completely biased Gronk fan, I couldnt agree more. you put into words what i have been thinking about for this topic. Kelce is like a great big giant WR. He even takes tackles like a much smaller man. He seldom takes big hits, he gets down instead of working for extra yardage.

    George Brett, Roger Clemens and Tommy Brady.

  • fergie23fergie23 Posts: 2,084 ✭✭✭✭

    Gronk had the biggest catch radius of any player I have ever seen. Gronk is the superior TE, but Kelce is a better WR.

    For the original question the answer is Kelce, the best pass-catching TE is Gonzalez (for now, but Kelce could catch him if he spends 5 more years with Mahomes).

    Robb

  • DarinDarin Posts: 6,298 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Craig that's the second time you've knocked Kelce by saying he is easy to tackle.

    So just for you............. Kelce does not go down easy on first contact, he is actually a tough runner
    after the catch. I've seen him break many hard tackles and go for extra yardage.
    I don't know what his yards after catch or yards after contact are but I'm guessing pretty good.
    You should be asking yourself if Gronk is such a big, tough guy why isn't he still playing?
    Kelce and Gronk are the same age. One is retired and one is in his prime.
    Kelce has missed two games in his entire career. I believe Tony Gonzalez missed only two games.
    Gronk only got tackled 621 times, sounds like he should have taken off the dress and played some football(thanks Aikman)
    Kelce has been tackled 700 plus times on his way to over 1,000 and like the energizer bunny still going strong.
    So was Gronk made of glass or what?
    For now Gonzalez is the greatest TE ever. Without looking it up I would guess Tony probably played in almost
    twice as many games as Gronk. So no way an injury prone part time TE is better than Gonzalez.

    DISCLAIMER FOR BASEBAL21
    In the course of every human endeavor since the dawn of time the risk of human error has always been a factor. Including but not limited to field goals, 4th down attempts, or multiple paragraph ramblings on a sports forum authored by someone who shall remain anonymous.
  • craig44craig44 Posts: 10,506 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Darin said:
    Craig that's the second time you've knocked Kelce by saying he is easy to tackle.

    So just for you............. Kelce does not go down easy on first contact, he is actually a tough runner
    after the catch. I've seen him break many hard tackles and go for extra yardage.
    I don't know what his yards after catch or yards after contact are but I'm guessing pretty good.
    You should be asking yourself if Gronk is such a big, tough guy why isn't he still playing?
    Kelce and Gronk are the same age. One is retired and one is in his prime.
    Kelce has missed two games in his entire career. I believe Tony Gonzalez missed only two games.
    Gronk only got tackled 621 times, sounds like he should have taken off the dress and played some football(thanks Aikman)
    Kelce has been tackled 700 plus times on his way to over 1,000 and like the energizer bunny still going strong.
    So was Gronk made of glass or what?
    For now Gonzalez is the greatest TE ever. Without looking it up I would guess Tony probably played in almost
    twice as many games as Gronk. So no way an injury prone part time TE is better than Gonzalez.

    I dont know how many pats games you were able to see, but I have never in 40 years of watching football seen a single player who was more difficult to get on the ground than Gronk. That physicality is the reason he missed so many games. he very seldom went down on first contact. when that happened, it was when a defender grabbed a foot and tripped him. the first one or two defenders would generally slow gronk down and the third (or 4th) defender in could line him up and really tee off on him. that is not what i see when i watch kelce. yes, kelce has been remarkably durable, but he does not take the beating gronk did. he just goes down.

    that is how i see it.

    George Brett, Roger Clemens and Tommy Brady.

  • DarinDarin Posts: 6,298 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @craig44 said:

    @Darin said:
    Craig that's the second time you've knocked Kelce by saying he is easy to tackle.

    So just for you............. Kelce does not go down easy on first contact, he is actually a tough runner
    after the catch. I've seen him break many hard tackles and go for extra yardage.
    I don't know what his yards after catch or yards after contact are but I'm guessing pretty good.
    You should be asking yourself if Gronk is such a big, tough guy why isn't he still playing?
    Kelce and Gronk are the same age. One is retired and one is in his prime.
    Kelce has missed two games in his entire career. I believe Tony Gonzalez missed only two games.
    Gronk only got tackled 621 times, sounds like he should have taken off the dress and played some football(thanks Aikman)
    Kelce has been tackled 700 plus times on his way to over 1,000 and like the energizer bunny still going strong.
    So was Gronk made of glass or what?
    For now Gonzalez is the greatest TE ever. Without looking it up I would guess Tony probably played in almost
    twice as many games as Gronk. So no way an injury prone part time TE is better than Gonzalez.

    I dont know how many pats games you were able to see, but I have never in 40 years of watching football seen a single player who was more difficult to get on the ground than Gronk. That physicality is the reason he missed so many games. he very seldom went down on first contact. when that happened, it was when a defender grabbed a foot and tripped him. the first one or two defenders would generally slow gronk down and the third (or 4th) defender in could line him up and really tee off on him. that is not what i see when i watch kelce. yes, kelce has been remarkably durable, but he does not take the beating gronk did. he just goes down.

    that is how i see it.

    Looks like 2018 is the first year they started keeping stats on yards after catch but Kelce is
    clearly ahead of Gronk in that category.
    I'm sure Gronk's YAC were better earlier in his career than later in his careeer but Kelce's would be also.

    DISCLAIMER FOR BASEBAL21
    In the course of every human endeavor since the dawn of time the risk of human error has always been a factor. Including but not limited to field goals, 4th down attempts, or multiple paragraph ramblings on a sports forum authored by someone who shall remain anonymous.
  • erikthredderikthredd Posts: 8,199 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Darin said:

    @craig44 said:

    @Darin said:
    Craig that's the second time you've knocked Kelce by saying he is easy to tackle.

    So just for you............. Kelce does not go down easy on first contact, he is actually a tough runner
    after the catch. I've seen him break many hard tackles and go for extra yardage.
    I don't know what his yards after catch or yards after contact are but I'm guessing pretty good.
    You should be asking yourself if Gronk is such a big, tough guy why isn't he still playing?
    Kelce and Gronk are the same age. One is retired and one is in his prime.
    Kelce has missed two games in his entire career. I believe Tony Gonzalez missed only two games.
    Gronk only got tackled 621 times, sounds like he should have taken off the dress and played some football(thanks Aikman)
    Kelce has been tackled 700 plus times on his way to over 1,000 and like the energizer bunny still going strong.
    So was Gronk made of glass or what?
    For now Gonzalez is the greatest TE ever. Without looking it up I would guess Tony probably played in almost
    twice as many games as Gronk. So no way an injury prone part time TE is better than Gonzalez.

    I dont know how many pats games you were able to see, but I have never in 40 years of watching football seen a single player who was more difficult to get on the ground than Gronk. That physicality is the reason he missed so many games. he very seldom went down on first contact. when that happened, it was when a defender grabbed a foot and tripped him. the first one or two defenders would generally slow gronk down and the third (or 4th) defender in could line him up and really tee off on him. that is not what i see when i watch kelce. yes, kelce has been remarkably durable, but he does not take the beating gronk did. he just goes down.

    that is how i see it.

    Looks like 2018 is the first year they started keeping stats on yards after catch but Kelce is

    I just picked a random year before 2018 and they have YAC yards listed:
    https://www.nfl.com/stats/player-stats/category/receiving/2015/reg/all/receivingtouchdowns/desc

    Looks like they started tracking YAC in 2002.

  • erikthredderikthredd Posts: 8,199 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Its too bad that these statistical sites don't track Yards After Contact on receptions like some do on rushing carries.
    Yards After Catch are a good stat to track but on many of those plays the receiver may catch the ball then never get touched on his w ay into the endzone.
    Gaining Yards After Contact would be considerably tougher imo because the receiver is literally fighting for yards at that point.

  • 2dueces2dueces Posts: 6,247 ✭✭✭✭✭

    No

    W.C.Fields
    "I spent 50% of my money on alcohol, women, and gambling. The other half I wasted.
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