Eagles general manager Howie Roseman has praised Jason Kelce‘s impact both on and off the field in Philadelphia as he admits that the former center is ‘irreplaceable’ following his retirement from pro football in March.

Roseman, who’s been in his role since 2010 despite also being the organization’s executive vice president for the last five years, appeared on ESPN to talk about the Eagles’ approach to finding a successor to Kelce, who was instrumental in Philly’s famous ‘tush push’ on offense these last few seasons, as well as the Super Bowl-winning team in 2017.

‘How do you replace a guy like that?’ asked co-host of the Pat McAfee Show A.J. Hawk about Kelce. ‘Can you talk a little bit about what he actually meant to that franchise and the people there and everything about it because that guy is just… a real gem. He seems to be somebody I feel like from all corners of the Earth you have to love that dude.’

‘The best and you don’t replace that,’ Roseman replied. ‘And I think that it would be disingenuous to even pretend that we’re going to replace Jason Kelce. The person and the player. And I mean this is a first ballot HOFer, both on and off the field.

‘And so, I think for us we gotta continue to build the team. It’s the ultimate team game to understand that he is a huge loss.’

 

Eagles GM Howie Roseman praised Jason Kelce's impact on and off the field in Philadelphia+4

 

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Eagles GM Howie Roseman praised Jason Kelce’s impact on and off the field in Philadelphia

Kelce retired after 13 NFL seasons with the Eagles in March, as he'll now move to broadcasting+4

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Kelce retired after 13 NFL seasons with the Eagles in March, as he’ll now move to broadcasting

Roseman also praised one of Kelce’s closest teammates, Fletcher Cox – a defensive tackle who was drafted just a season after Kelce in 2012. Cox, 33, also retired this offseason.

‘Fletcher Cox is a huge loss for our organization, our football team,’ the 48-year-old, one-time Super Bowl-winning front office executive said. ‘The only thing we can do is we tried to get our young guys around them as much as possible so they can absorb it, so they can see what amazing players and people they were.

‘But also, that it doesn’t come easy in this league to be great at whatever job you have. That you have to work at it. That those guys were our hardest workers. They had unbelievable love for the game, unbelievable love for this team and city. And I feel like I certainly wouldn’t be sitting here today without Jason Kelce, and I’m including Fletch’ too because obviously we lost him as well.’

Howeman also described former defensive tackle Fletcher Cox's retirement as a 'huge loss'

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Howeman also described former defensive tackle Fletcher Cox’s retirement as a ‘huge loss’

Roseman and Kelce shake hands following Kelce's NFL retirement announcement in March+4

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Roseman and Kelce shake hands following Kelce’s NFL retirement announcement in March

At the start of the month, Kelce opened up on his move to ESPN as an analyst on the network’s pregame show ‘Monday Night Countdown,’ which McAfee bragged about to Roseman after the latter’s aforementioned comments on the former’s show, Thurs.

‘You don’t gotta rub it in dude, you don’t gotta rub it in that you’re his teammate you know,’ Roseman joked, adding: ‘You know what though, the other thing that we talk about is just for me as a GM to be able to have these guys and we still obviously have Lane [Johnson] and B.G. [Brandon Graham] and those guys, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 draft picks, etc.

‘To get those guys who’ve been through everything we’ve gone together and to have those guys and to be able to call them and saying ”Hey, I’m thinking about this. How do you think it would affect the team?” I mean special.

‘Now, never replace those guys but I feel like a lot of those guys we still have in this building have the chance to be this 10-15 year Eagles players with a chance to go into the NFL Hall of Fame.’