One of the Kansas City Chiefs' bright young stars stood in front of the local media on Monday afternoon and shared his thoughts on where he believes this team is headed in 2015.
Travis Kelce, who is coming off his first full NFL season after injuring his knee and sitting out as a rookie in 2013, led the Chiefs in most receiving categories a season ago.
Kelce finished with 67 receptions for 862 yards and five touchdowns, including 15 receptions of 20-plus yards, all of which led the Chiefs—while also leading all NFL tight ends with 512 yards after the catch.
He was also listed as Pro Football Focus’ No. 1 ranked run-blocking tight end.
Without a doubt, Kelce is one of the NFL's promising young playmakers at a position that's becoming even more of a critical component in creating mismatches in an offense's favor.
Despite all that individual success last season, Kelce only seems interested in where the Chiefs are headed as a team.
"In my mind, the sky is the limit," Kelce said. "That is just the confidence that I have in the players, the team that we've been able to put together. I think we can go ahead and have one heck of an outstanding season.
"Whether that's me putting up big numbers, average numbers or whatever statistics that you want to throw out there, I think this is going to be one heck of a team going forward."
The expectations for Kelce will only to continue to grow because of the success he found last season and the numbers he was able to put up, but also because of veteran Anthony Fasano, who departed this offseason.
"He taught me how to be a professional, on and off the field," Kelce said of Fasano. "He showed me how to eat right, how to watch film correctly and overall how to stay on top of the fundamentals and techniques to make it through a 16-game season."
After two years of playing together and "following the leader," as Kelce puts it, Fasano's departure, although part of the business, wasn't easy to swallow for Kelce.
"When you see (Anthony) Fasano go, that's a brother," Kelce said. "That rips your heart out. But it's a business and of course he knows that and everyone else in the room knows that.
"It just lets you know that it is a business and everybody's spot is vulnerable. It just makes you want to be more accountable in terms of what you do for a living."
Photos of Travis Kelce's best plays in 2014.
While the circumstances surrounding the tight end position this offseason put Kelce in more of a leadership position, he had already accepted that role and didn't need any more motivation to improve his craft, which included watching a lot of film this offseason.
"I watch countless amount of film," Kelce said. "I've watched every NFL tight end that there is today. I watched a lot of previous film as well.
"Recently, I've picked up Tony Gonzalez's film from about 2004-08, just studying what he's been able to do and how he played the position."
For Chiefs Kingdom, the unfair comparison to Gonzalez for every tight end that puts on the uniform has been floated out there before, at least in terms of impact and what they can do for an offense.
And after Kelce's 2014 season, he's no exception.
Gonzalez spent 12 years in Kansas City (1997-2008) and sits as the franchise's all-time leader in receptions (916), yards receiving (10,940) and touchdowns (76), among others.
While Kelce has a long way to go before reaching the kind of level that Gonzalez found himself after more than a decade with the team, the fact that the young tight end is looking at Gonzalez's film as a way improve his game can only make Chiefs fans smile for a few different reasons.
One player currently on the Chiefs roster who might be able to help Kelce out this season is receiver Jeremy Maclin, who signed this offseason after spending the last six years with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Simply stated, Maclin's presence on the outside may loosen things up across the middle for Kelce.
In 2014, Maclin had a career year for the Eagles with 85 receptions for 1,318 yards and 10 touchdowns, finishing seventh in the NFL with 522 yards after the catch, all of which earned him the first Pro Bowl nomination of his career.
"His skillset is through the roof," Kelce said of Maclin. "You can't really put a number of what a player like that could do for our team."
When joined by running backs Jamaal Charles and Knile Davis, offensive weapon De'Anthony Thomas, veteran receiver Jason Avant and second-year up-and-comer Albert Wilson, plus a revamped offensive line, Maclin and Kelce lead an improved Chiefs offense, at least on paper, heading into 2015.
One reason to feel optimistic about Kelce's future, even more so than simply his performance in 2014, is that he has had an entire offseason to get bigger, faster and stronger.
Last season, coming off the knee injury that cost him his rookie season, Kelce was eased back into the mix starting in July and never had the offseason to do anything but rehab his injury.
"I really think that with an entire offseason, I'll go ahead and gain more muscle and be more ready for a complete season," he said.
That added strength should help Kelce.
"My senior year (at Cincinnati) was probably the most athletic I've ever been (at 260 pounds) in terms of strength and physical ability," Kelce said. "I'm between 255-260 pounds right now, and (getting to 260) should be a reasonable goal (by training camp)."
He played at around 250 pounds in 2014.
Kelce spent much of his offseason working out at the Chiefs' complex and calling Kansas City home, which was something that was important to him.
"If anybody needed me in terms of community relations, if anybody just needed any help around the city, I wanted to be there. I've just embraced the city and I'm looking forward to another year."