From Travis Kelce's perspective, Orlando Brown switched to the dark side.
The free-agent left tackle signed a long-term contract with the Cincinnati Bengals this offseason, joining the club that has become the Kansas City Chiefs' primary rival in the AFC.
"It hurts. It hurts my soul, man. Hurts my soul. It's like watching your best friend just turn evil on you," Kelce said last week on his New Heights podcast with brother Jason, via the Kansas City Star.
Kelce noted that the Bengals have beaten the Chiefs in three of the past four meetings, making it tougher to watch a quality teammate join a rival.
"It's tough man. Obviously, I mean, the past like two years we've struggled beating the Bengals," Kelce said. "So there's been a lot of like build up in emotion of like, I would say, not necessarily hate but just like dislike towards the Bengals because they keep beating us, and they keep talking about it every time they do. So it's like, man, to see him go to the dark side, man, it's an awkward feeling.
"Obviously I hope that he has an absolute Hall of Fame career. You know what I mean? I wish nothing but the best for OB. He was an unbelievable leader. An unbelievable teammate on and off the field."
The Chiefs were unable to sign Brown to a long-term deal and pivoted to signing Jawaan Taylor.
As much as it hurt for Kelce to watch Brown join a rival, he doesn't begrudge any player getting paid.
"All the guys that you just listed right there, Andrew Wylie, Khalen Saunders, Juan Thornhill, Orlando Brown, JuJu (Smith-Schuster), all those guys man, I love to see those guys get paid," Kelce said.
Kelce knows as long as K.C. has Patrick Mahomes under center, the scales will tip their way more often than not.