PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Eagles tight end Zach Ertz says he is frustrated over recent contract talks with the team. Ertz says his family has dug “roots” in the City of Philadelphia and would like to spend the rest of his career here, but he’s unsure the feeling is mutual.
On Thursday afternoon, Ertz was asked if he was frustrated over not getting an extension deal done with the team after San Francisco TE George Kittle and Kansas City TE Travis Kelce landed big contracts.
“I’m kind of an emotional guy when it comes to football,” Ertz said. “I play with my heart as much as I can. Obviously, it’s been frustrating at times it’s been difficult. I said all along I want to be here for the long run. I don’t know for sure if that feeling is mutual but I know I’m going to play this year like it is my last year and I’m going to leave everything I possible have in the tank for this team and city, because that’s what this city deserves nothing less. So I’m going into this year that I’m going to leave it all out there, whatever happens, happens. I’ll let the details be with my agent and Howie, but I’m going to do everything I can to give this city what it deserves and that’s everything I possibly have. Even if that means playing with that lacerated kidney, whatever it takes to win football games and whatever I can do to leave a mark on this team and city.”
San Francisco 49ers’ George Kittle signed a 5-year, $75 million dollar deal and Kansas City Chiefs’ Travis Kelce signed a 4-year, $57 million contract extension in August.
Ertz believes it shouldn’t be hard to get a deal done and admitted the frustration may have gotten the best of him a day or two during training camp. But now, he’s focused on the season.
“I don’t want to get into the exact details but I don’t think it should be hard to get a deal done now, but at the same time now the season is starting, I can’t really focus on that during training camp it kind of got the best of me a day or two and I really just had to talk to a couple people, kinda of reset my mind, lean into my faith that I really can’t control the situation. I’m going to trust in the Lord on this thing whether it’s going to Philly — hopefully, I want to be here — or wherever it is.”
Ertz is 29 and falls in between the ages of Kelce, 30, and Kittle, 26. He has 525 catches through the first seven seasons of his career, more than any tight end in NFL history.
He is 65 receptions shy of passing Eagles Hall of Fame wide receiver Harold Carmichael, who leads the franchise with 589. Ertz also led the Eagles in both catches and receiving yards over the last four seasons.
There is no question that Ertz’s talent is comparable to that of Kittle and Kelce, but the Eagles recently spent a 2nd round pick on TE Dallas Goedert in the 2018 draft. It’s likely the addition of Goedert is playing a role in the negotiations.
The thought of playing for another team hasn’t crossed his mind yet.
“I want to be here, I never thought of playing in another city,” Ertz said. “My family loves it here. My brother is going to Temple, his finance is going to school here. So we have roots here now, this is home to me. I would never think about playing in another jersey until if that time comes.”
The tight end wants his career to resemble the late Kobe Bryant, who played his whole career with one organization, the Los Angeles Lakers.
Ertz says he is going to do whatever he can to help the team and he has “never felt better going into a football season.”
The Eagles kickoff their season Sunday, Sept. 13 against the Washington Football Team.