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It seems the Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens tangled on the field before they tangled on the field.
Before the teams battled in the AFC championship game Jan. 28, video showed Chiefs star quarterback Patrick Mahomes and tight end Travis Kelce booting Ravens placekicker Justin Tucker from the area of the field where he was warming up.
One video showed Mahomes working on his throws out of one end zone, while Kelce tossed aside some footballs and a Ravens helmet, ostensibly to give Mahomes space.
“Travis Kelce told Justin Tucker he needed to move because their QB Patrick Mahomes had to warm up. So Kelce kicked his ball away and threw his helmet,” NFL Network reporter James Palmer captioned a video on X.
Tucker, considered by many to be one of the best kickers in NFL history, said that each team’s kicker goes to the other team’s warmup area on the field before the game, and he usually does it about 90 minutes before the game starts.
“I’ve been doing the exact same thing for 12 years, never really had a problem with anybody,” he told reporters in a video posted on X.
“That’s just kind of the way we’ve always done it, the way kickers around the league have always done it.”
Tucker then explained how Mahomes and Kelce ended up taking over the area of the field where he was.
“I saw Patrick there trying to warm up and get some dropbacks, so he asked while I was on the ground stretching if I could move my helmet. So, I happily got up, and I moved my helmet out of the way. At least I thought it was enough out of the way,” he said.
“And then Travis comes over and he just kicks my stuff and he throws my helmet. I thought it was all just some gamesmanship, all in good fun. But they seemed to be taking it a little bit more seriously, and I’m totally willing to let it all go.”
“It’s not like I’m out there trying to be problematic. I was trying to get ready for the football game, just like they are,” he added.
Tucker kicked a field goal and an extra point, but the Ravens fell to the Chiefs, 17-10. Kansas City advanced to the Super Bowl where they will take on the San Francisco 49ers.