It is more than a month into the NFL season and I have not watched a game. In fact, I was perfectly content to not only miss all the live action but also refrain from following the division races from afar (except maybe for an occasional Seahawks score 😉). However, although my streak of not watching a minute of NFL competition during the 2023 season is still intact, I am no longer agnostic about the major storyline driving it.
Thank you, Taylor Swift.
(I don’t know if that is sarcastic or not).
Because of the massive, unprecedented appeal of every little thing that Swift does, it goes without saying that the ultra-powerful microscope focuses keenly on her dating life. The fact that she is now dating Kansas City Chiefs Travis Kelce has sent the media bonkers and thrusted even more attention on the ever-popular NFL. It is mania.
Whether the more traditional NFL fan likes it or not, this season is The Swift Season. Not only did NBC show Swift in her box a staggering 17 times during the Chiefs-Jets Sunday night game, the NFL also took it upon itself to update its Instagram bio to “Chiefs are 2-0 as swifties.” I’m not kidding.
Yes, I think things are a little extreme. Am I surprised? Well, not with the way our society has reacted to the Taylor-Kelce relationship but perhaps a bit with Swift’s incredible ascension to the most popular person on the planet.
I was already blown away by Swift’s clout six years ago. In that blog post where I outlined my complicated history of following the performer, I never thought her star would continue to rise to reach the level it is at today.
By all means I wish Taylor and Travis well. I do hope that the NFL sets standards for its coverage, and, more generally, that “Swifties” can follow their beloved chart topper in a healthy, non-idolistic way. For those cranky football fans who are mad that the world’s most famous celebrity has entered the NFL narrative, they can shake it off. Don’t Blink.