Travis Kelce, a 34-year-old Cleveland native in his 11th NFL season, found himself in uncharted territory as he faced freezing conditions during the Kansas City Chiefs’ playoff victory over the Miami Dolphins at Arrowhead Stadium.
In what officially ranks as the fourth-coldest game in NFL history, temperatures plummeted to -27 Fahrenheit with wind chill.
Expressing his shock at the extreme cold, Kelce shared his experience on the New Heights podcast with brother Jason.
He admitted to resorting to heaters on the sidelines even during brief, one-play substitutions, a first in his career.
“I caught myself, like, even during a drive, if I got taken out for a play, running over to the heaters to warm up my hands and my feet to try and get feeling back,” Kelce revealed. “It was that freaking cold.”
While fans were allowed to bundle up, Kelce highlighted the challenge faced by players on the field. He disclosed various strategies used by the team to combat the cold, with heaters emerging as the most effective.
“Heaters were the only thing,” Kelce emphasized. “Kept them hammies warm. Kept them glutes firing. Gotta stay loose. Loose as possible.”
Kelce also shared an anecdote about a teammate who suffered burns on his feet after using hand warmers in his shoes. Despite the discomfort, the player endured the entire game with golf ball-sized blisters on the top of his feet.
Discussing additional cold-weather strategies, Kelce and Jason mentioned wearing latex gloves underneath exterior gloves, a technique Kelce found less than ideal due to the outer gloves moving around.
Jason brought up the use of cayenne pepper to keep feet warm, a suggestion met with skepticism by Kelce, who dismissed it as an “old wives’ tale.”
The conversation delved into defensive players using Vaseline on their bare arms to make blocking more challenging. Kelce remained doubtful about the effectiveness, stating, “Vaseline at that point ain’t working.”
Despite the notorious wind conditions at Arrowhead Stadium, Kelce admitted he was too cold to even notice the breeze during the game.
Reflecting on the heated coils underneath the stadium field, he confessed to not noticing them but speculated on the field’s condition without them, describing it as “100-percent rock hard.”