Many fans feel the NFL is overreacting to the purported connection between Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and worldwide pop singer Taylor Swift. Even Kelce agrees.
“Is the NFL going too far?” “What is your genuine opinion?” Jason Kelce questioned Travis Kelce on their weekly “New Heights” podcast after the Chiefs’ “Sunday Night Football” game against the New York Jets, which Swift attended. “I think everybody is just overwhelmed,” Travis said. They’re going a little too far.”
The NFL is dismissing the criticism, claiming that, although it is tapping into pop culture, its coverage is still “focused on the game, our players, and a variety of other initiatives.”
“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 stated in a statement obtained by ESPN on Wednesday.
The event drew more attention when Grammy-winning singer Taylor Swift and other celebrities came despite ongoing rumors about her and Travis Kelce’s unconfirmed connection.
Travis kelce said the NFL is overdoing it with the Taylor Swift coverage 💯
— Shannonnn sharpes Burner (PARODY Account) (@shannonsharpeee) October 4, 2023
Swift was featured 17 times during the “Sunday Night Football” broadcast, according to the Athletic. It paid off for NBC, as the Chiefs’ 23-20 win against the Jets was seen by an average of 27 million people. Following the Chiefs’ victory, the NFL’s bio was momentarily modified to “Chiefs are 2-0 as Swifties.”
The NFL said that this is standard practice. “We frequently change our bios and profile imagery based on what’s happening in and around our games, as well as culturally,” the league said.
Travis and Jason Kelce went on to evaluate the NFL’s coverage of the game on Sunday night.
“Take away your feelings for Taylor,” Jason instructed. “What is your honest opinion on how the NFL is treating celebrities at the games?””I think it’s fun when they show who’s at the game,” Travis said. “I think it adds a little more to the atmosphere, a little more to what you’re watching.” At the same time, they’re going a little too far.”
“I just think the NFL is not used to celebrities coming to the games,” Jason said. “It’s as if basketball has it all figured out.” They’re all seated at the courtside. They show ’em once or twice, then return to the game.”