Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and music superstar Taylor Swift’s blossoming romance is captivating fans and dramatically increasing the NFL team’s female viewership, according to team owner Clark Hunt.
Chiefs Crediting Swift for Audience Growth
Hunt said in an interview this week that the Chiefs have seen “historic growth” in female viewership thanks to the Kelce-Swift relationship that began last fall when Swift started attending Chiefs games.
“It’s been a real blessing for our organization. Travis is obviously very popular among our long-time fans, but the way Taylor Swift has introduced us to a new audience has been tremendous,” Hunt said.
He cited internal viewership analytics showing a 32% increase in women 18-35 watching Chiefs games on TV and streaming:
|% Female Viewers Ages 18-35
“Seeing more women embracing football and joining Chiefs Kingdom thanks to Travis and Taylor warms my heart,” Hunt added.
Swift’s Influence Bringing New Fans
According to Chiefs players and fans, Swift’s devoted followers dubbed “Swifties” have caused a noticeable difference both at home games and on social media this season.
“It’s awesome seeing all the Swifties rocking Travis’s jersey and learning about football. Makes the Kingdom louder and stronger,” said Chiefs Quarterback Patrick Mahomes. He also thanked Swift for “helping us get more primetime games!”
Chiefs fans on Twitter and TikTok have commented on the influx of female fans chanting Kelce’s name and wearing his #87 jersey at Arrowhead Stadium.
“My daughter is suddenly obsessed with football thanks to Taylor Swift! But I’m not complaining because now we have something fun we can bond over on Sundays,” one fan and father said in a viral TikTok video.
Romance Rumors Spark Controversy
While the Chiefs are celebrating Swift’s fan recruiting power, her involvement has sparked controversy across the NFL.
Detractors suggest Swift is revising rules that forbid teams from paying celebrities for marketing partnerships. One NFL coach who asked to remain anonymous said, “It seems highly suspicious that the league’s hottest pop star randomly starts dating a Chiefs player right before playoffs.”
Hunt firmly denied orchestrating a fake romance, saying “Travis and Taylor’s relationship is very organic.” He explained that Travis met Taylor at a mutual friend’s wedding last summer, they hit it off immediately, and only later realized their worlds could intersect professionally.
Still, Hunt admitted “If it brings more fans into the stadium, then that’s just an added bonus.”
Cousins: “Taylor Can Sit On Our Side Anytime”
The harshest criticism comes from hardcore football fans who think Swift’s involvement threatens the sport’s masculine identity.
But Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins said he welcomes Swift’s fandom. “It’s great for the league. I hope she sticks around for a long time,” Cousins told reporters.
Laughing, he added, “And if she wants to sit on our side at the next Vikings-Chiefs game, she’s more than welcome!”
His comments signal that Swift has allies against sexist backlash as she continues rebranding football as a family activity.
What’s Next For the Chiefs Power Couple
While the debate rages on, Travis and Taylor are focused on championship dreams.
Kelce now sports Swift’s lucky number 13 on his practice helmet. “They’re clearly smitten with each other. Travis lights up whenever her name gets mentioned,” said teammate Nick Bolton.
Meanwhile, Swift’s smash-hit new album “Glory” features multiple football references with songs rumored to be about Kelce.
As the Chiefs enter the AFC Championship versus the Buffalo Bills, Hunt hopes Swift cheers them onto Super Bowl glory.
“Travis plays his best with Taylor’s support. I’m inviting her to perform at our victory parade,” Hunt said with a smile.
So whether you’re a longtime fan or a “Swiftie-Come-Lately,” get ready to see this power couple take over Super Bowl week in early February!
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