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A Jim Gazzolo Article: Swift Response

Feb 03, 2024 11:31AM ● By Kelsey Swire
Pop star has some NFL fans singing blues


By Jim Gazzolo 

Never before has a slender 5-foot-11, 125-pound figure had such an impact on the NFL.

And this one has done it without playing a down or even uttering a word.

Taylor Swift has turned a portion of the NFL viewing public into a babbling, raving bunch of fools who seem ready to turn off the game when her image appears on their television screens.

All this because she wanted to support her boyfriend. They should be so fortunate to have somebody like Swift on their side.

Now I’m no Swiftie, nor did I know such a thing existed until this season, but I’m also not bothered by the fact networks continue to show the pop star during Kansas City Chiefs games. During a three-hour contest, we might get to see her for two minutes if that, so it seems pretty harmless. 

Yet to some, and they have become more and more vocal with every Chief win, you would think she was the entire broadcast.

In case you don’t know yet, Swift is dating K.C. tight end Travis Kelce. The two seem happy and enjoying their lives. Good for them.

That, however, appears to be too much for a portion of the NFL fanbase that thinks it’s just not right they have to see such joy in others.

Not on their big screens, they proclaim.

It’s hard to tell just what those folks are against anyway. It’s not like Swift is the first person to be featured by networks at sporting events.

Every Laker basketball game for years has been accompanied by the usual Jack Nicholson shots and the Republic somehow survived. The sport even grew during this time. 

As for networks, they have a history of showing off their stars in crowd shots during big games as a way to cross-promote events. That is just good business sense.

Now we have the Chiefs back in the Super Bowl for the fourth time in five years, with Kelce expected to again have a starring role.

And yes, despite being on tour in Japan at the time, Swift promises to be at the game two Sundays from now in Las Vegas. Her private jet should whisk Swift over the Pacific Ocean in plenty of time to make the opening kickoff.

Good for her and good for Kelce. They don’t seem to let the negative talk be a distraction. Maybe they are just used to it.

This has proven to be a good thing for the NFL. It never hurts to get new viewers for whatever reason. Anytime extra eyes are on a game that is not a bad thing.

Swift is far better for the camera than seeing Jerry Jones every time the Dallas Cowboys score, fumble, or lose in the playoffs. The Dallas owner is on far more than Swift and nobody loses their mind.

It’s not like she is taking away from the game or forcing fans to miss any of the action. To me, she seems to be just like any other crowd shot. 

Next weekend the Super Bowl will be played, CBS will cover it and the NFL will use whatever celebrity it can to promote it.

And yes, despite the wishes of some, Swift will be there wearing some type of Chiefs outfit with Kelce’s No. 87 on it. That is just fine with most. 

Yet there will be some counting every second she appears on their screens at home and think it is the end of the world.

That will be a true waste of time.

 Jim Gazzolo is a freelance writer who covers McNeese athletics. He is the host of Poke Nation on CBS-Lake Charles