KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce said he regretted shoving offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy on the sideline during a moment of frustration in Sunday night’s loss to the Indianapolis Colts.
“We’re good,” Kelce said Wednesday. “Me and Coach Bieniemy have a very close relationship. I love him. He’s helped me out tremendously as a person, as a professional and I’m sure he’ll keep doing that throughout the rest of my career. … I love the guy. That will never change. I appreciate him being on my tail to get me going.
“As far as what happened on the sideline, sometimes in football you get a little heated with your brothers or your coaches.”
Kelce shoved Bieniemy on the sideline after he dropped a difficult but catchable pass early in the game. The two had to be pulled apart — Kelce by guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif; Bieniemy by tackle Cam Erving.
Kelce soon returned to hug the offensive coordinator.
“He’s like a father figure, in terms of being there for me on the field,” Kelce said. “We’re wired a little bit the same when it comes to our competitive edge. … It’s something immediately I regretted and I just wanted to make it good and let him know that, ‘You know what? I’m ready to rock and roll for you.'”
Kelce was frustrated at other points during the 19-13 loss, shouting more than once at officials after an opponent wasn’t penalized for pass interference.
He had problems controlling his temper during games earlier in his career. He was ejected from a 2016 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars for picking a penalty flag off the ground and throwing it at an official.
“I haven’t felt like that in a while,” Kelce said. “That’s definitely something I’ve been thinking about a lot, just how to handle a lot of those situations. Looking back, seeing how I connected the dots after maybe a frustrating play and how to kind of [narrow] in and be able to attack on the next play with a clear mind.
“It’s football. It’s not always going to go your way, so I’ve just got to maintain the level of focus and the level of excitement that I have for the game.”
Quarterback Patrick Mahomes said he felt no need to calm Kelce during the game.
“He’s played this game for a long time and he understands how to have success,” Mahomes said. “Obviously, I’m going to try to pump him up and have him ready on every single play because he can get open on every single play.
“He knows how to handle this game. He knows how to have success. I’m going to let him go through what he needs to go through in order to do that.”