Travis Kelce may think the NFL is “overdoing it a little bit” with the Taylor Swift content, but the league doesn’t believe so.
Football fans have been giving the NFL backlash for how it’s been focusing heavily on the rumored relationship between the music megastar and the Kansas City Chiefs All-Pro tight end. Swift was present for Kelce’s last two games, including the 23-20 victory over the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on Sunday night.
The NFL’s social team decided to use that second victory with Swift in attendance as its new Instagram bio, which read, “The @Chiefs are now 2-0 with @TaylorSwift13 in attendance.” Photos of Swift were also placed as the league’s TikTok header.
But the NFL is standing its ground as it addressed the backlash from fans thinking Kelce-Swift is being put in the spotlight too much.
“We frequently change our bios and profile imagery based on what’s happening in and around our games, as well as culturally,” the league told People magazine. “The Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce news has been a pop-cultural moment we’ve leaned into in real time, as it’s an intersection of sport and entertainment, and we’ve seen an incredible amount of positivity around the sport.”
The NFL added that “the vast majority of our content has remained focused on the game,” which included reference to the “Toy Story Funday Football alt-cast” that was playing for the Atlanta Falcons-Jacksonville Jaguars game in London on Sunday morning.
Of course, this saga has merged one of the most popular players in the most popular professional sports league in the country to one of the world’s biggest pop music icons. So, the buzz surrounding it, especially with Swift in attendance at games, makes for obvious headlines.
But Kelce appeared on his “New Heights” podcast with his Philadelphia Eagles older brother, Jason Kelce, to say that things might be starting to go overboard with it.
“I think everybody is just overwhelmed with … I think it’s fun when they show who all is at the game,” the Chiefs tight end said. “I think it brings a little bit more to the atmosphere, brings a little bit more to what you’re watching.
“But at the same time, I think they’re overdoing it a little bit, for sure – especially my situation. I think they’re just trying to have fun with it and a lot of the people watching …”
When Chiefs running back Isiah Pacheco ran in a touchdown in the first quarter against the Jets on Sunday night, the normal play by NFL broadcasts is to pan down on the field to watch the touchdown celebration, which was going to be a dance by Pacheco.
Instead, the NBC broadcast quickly panned to Swift celebrating in a suite at MetLife Stadium. By the time the camera went back down to the field, Pacheco was running off the field with his teammates.
Kelce is still trying to wrap his head around what’s become the greatest spectacle in sports today.
“I had no idea,” he said of the attention that the rumored relationship is getting during his appearance on the “Chasin’ It with Trey Wingo and Chase Daniel” podcast on Tuesday. “You can’t tell me that anybody else did, either, but I can’t be mad at how it’s all played out. I’ll say that.”
The Chiefs will be in Minnesota on Sunday to face the Vikings at 4:25 p.m. ET, and the NFL will certainly be watching to see if Swift attends her third Chiefs game in a row.