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'Bold' choice: NFL champ Kelce talks to Phillies

MLB.com @ToddZolecki

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Jason Kelce made Chase Utley's infamous World Series championship speech seem tame a couple of weeks ago, when he dropped a wildly celebrated, but profanity-laden speech about the Eagles, underdogs and championships on the steps of the Philadelphia art museum.

The millions that watched will never forget it.

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Jason Kelce made Chase Utley's infamous World Series championship speech seem tame a couple of weeks ago, when he dropped a wildly celebrated, but profanity-laden speech about the Eagles, underdogs and championships on the steps of the Philadelphia art museum.

The millions that watched will never forget it.

• Phillies' Spring Training information

A more subdued Kelce traded his Mummers costume for a red Phillies "Be Bold" T-shirt Monday morning at Bright House Field, where he addressed the Phillies before their first full-squad workout. Kelce had been in Clearwater to unwind from the Super Bowl madness when he contacted the Phillies to see if he could watch a workout.

Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said, "Absolutely. And could you speak to my players, too?"

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

"There are a lot of similarities," Kelce said about the Eagles and Phillies. "A good young team with a lot of talent. When anybody was talking about Philadelphia before the season started, I think we were usually projected to be 8-8, and then we went to win the Super Bowl.

"You see the talent. You see a lot of the pieces ready to expand on this thing. I think that obviously Gabe is hitting that home. He's pointing to us just because he sees the similarities as well. I'd be lying to if you if [I said] at the beginning of the year we were thinking about the Super Bowl. That's not what we were thinking about at that point. At that point you're just thinking about trying to get better and prove yourself and make sure you're putting yourself in a position to do your job. I think that's the biggest thing that they're focused on as well."

• Castrovince: Phils on the cusp of greatness?

The central theme to Kapler's camp has been "be bold," which is why everybody had "Be Bold" T-shirts in their lockers Monday. Kelce understood the message.

Tweet from @Eagles: Jason Kelce and Brad Lidge know what it takes to win a Championship in Philadelphia.Thanks to the @Phillies for inviting Jason to speak with the team! #BrotherlyLove pic.twitter.com/I9W4Rcxp2Y

"You have to be aggressive and you have to be confident enough to do what you think is right," Kelce said. "At the end of the day I think confidence breeds better play. Obviously, that's something that the skipper is trying to hit home with these guys. A lot of it is being bold enough with yourself, being honest with yourself, looking in the mirror, where do I need to get better? What do I need to improve upon every single day? As long as you're getting better yourself ... you're going to be putting your team in a better chance to be successful."

Kapler's biggest takeaway?

"I think there were eight to 10 [things] to take away, but the No. 1 was it is OK to fall down, be fearless, get back up, be bold and do it all over again," he said. "Champions have stories to share and they're effective for a reason. Because they've been through the ups and downs, they've displayed courage, they've come together as units, they've known what it feels like to have people count them out and then to prove people wrong."

But most important, did Kelce curse?

"Probably more, actually," Kelce said. "At least through the start of the speech I made an effort to not curse, then that quickly faded."

Kapler's early impressions

Kapler said he loved the first full-squad workout.

"They came out and they gave us everything they had," he said. "We have high expectations. We expect you to come prepared. We expect you to come in, bust your [rear end] and to come and do it the next day, and they started off on the right foot."

The manager said it was "pretty awesome" to see Carlos Santana bring so much intensity the first day. Kapler watched live batting practice on one field at Carpenter Complex and made a point to mention Cesar Hernandez, Jerad Eickhoff, Franklyn Kilome, Nick Pivetta and Cole Irvin.

"The ball was coming off the bat good," Kapler said about Hernandez. "He was getting off his 'A' swing quite a bit, which is tough to do in live BP. Kilome, good live arm, fastball the rides up in the zone. Dirty breaking ball. There was a lot to dream on today."

Stay healthy, boys

Kapler had a lengthy talk on the field after the workout with prospects Dylan Cozens, Scott Kingery and Andrew Pullin about staying healthy throughout the season, which included working out hard, getting enough rest and eating healthy, while not being afraid to indulge every once in a while.

What are Kapler's indulgences?

"An occasional glass of wine, scotch, steaks," Kapler said. "I really, really like creamy vegetable stuff. We had some creamed spinach last night. Incredible. I can go on and on. This could turn into a food discussion and I'd stand here all day."

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

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