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Will Travis Kelce take his place among the NFL's best tight ends?

A moveable chess piece in the Chiefs offense, 2015 is going to be a very good year for the young tight end.

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Travis Kelce's rookie season was over before it ever got started. He sustained a bone bruise to his knee in the preseason and got shelved completely after having microfracture surgery. He was active for only one of the first five games. There was no way to know how he would bounce back from that surgery in 2014, which is probably why he wasn't initially named a starter. After the first two games, the Kansas City Chiefs had seen enough and gave Kelce a promotion.

He repaid them for their confidence by going out and catching 67 balls for 862 yards and five touchdowns. A pretty damn good year, but we still haven't seen his best.

With Kelce another year removed from the knee surgery, I expect him to be quite a bit more explosive this season and just generally stronger in his lower body. Things should open up a lot more for Kelce underneath and up the seams with the addition of Jeremy Maclin, a bona fide deep threat. The fact that he's heading into the season as the starter also means Kelce should have more opportunities in the passing game over the course of the season. We all know Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith just looooooves to throw it short and Kelce should be the primary beneficiary of that again this season.

After not playing for most of his rookie season, I can understand why people were excited by Kelce's numbers last year. However, I see the potential for even more from him this season. At 6'5, 260 pounds, Kelce is still athletic enough to get down the field like a big wide receiver. The Chiefs eventually started moving him all around their formations last season to put him in better positions to get the ball. It made sense because of his ability to run after the catch.

His hands are also top-notch, and he has a knack for going up and catching contested passes. You put it all together and it's clear that Kelce is going to be a problem for opposing defenses this season, maybe even on par with a guy like Jimmy Graham.