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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Have the ‘Swifties’ and the NFL have taken things too far?

Wikimedia Commons
Taylor Swift singing during her Eras tour.

The Kansas City Chiefs’ overtime victory against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl 58 – the Chiefs’ second Super Bowl win in a row – was memorable for more than a couple of reasons. 

After all, you don’t have to be a football fan to know there’s been controversy about the relationship between Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and pop megastar Taylor Swift since the couple made their relationship official.

After “Traylor” became a thing, through the last weeks of the NFL regular season and the playoffs, objection to the attention-getting pair was brewing on social media and the internet in general, where some NFL fans have summed up their feelings about the Chiefs with one four-letter word: hate.   

According to, the website for the ABC TV station in Wichita, Kansas, a 90-day study based on data from X, formerly known as Twitter, showed that the Chiefs were the most disliked NFL team when the data was released in late January, surpassing the often-hated Dallas Cowboys.  As reported by, online betting platform “tracked negative sentiment posts, such as ‘I hate the Cowboys,’ ‘Screw the Cowboys,’ etc., directed at each team.”

The KAKE website also referred to the study’s findings about fans’ hostility toward the Chiefs. “Six straight AFC Championship appearances and four trips to the Super Bowl could be creating ‘fan fatigue,’ the study says, ‘…similar to how fans felt with the Patriots and Tom Brady.’ Also contributing could be exposure of Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift, as well as the idea that officiating gives the Chiefs favorable treatment.”

Still, many other people were eager to know if Swift would be able to make an appearance at the Super Bowl since she was still on her Eras tour. Her final show was on Feb. 11, Super Bowl Sunday, in Tokyo. 

In his Feb. 10 article on, Alex Andrejev speculated about whether Swift could get to Las Vegas’ Allegiant Stadium in time for the game.

“With a nighttime show to close four days in Japan, Swift will have to hustle to get across the Pacific Ocean and back to the States in time for kickoff,” Andrejev wrote.  “So, can she make it? In short, yes. The 17-hour time difference works in her favor and means Swift could get to Las Vegas with plenty of time to spare”. 

Of course, Swift did make it to the Super Bowl, frustrating a lot of people on social media who were praying she wouldn’t get there. 

Under a post of Taylor Swift on SportsCenter’s Instagram account, Jack Eckert posted the following comment:  “The only reason why I’m happy that the NFL is over is that I don’t have to see Taylor Swift again.”

Some who have expressed their opinions on social media have made it clear that they think  Swift and her fan base, the “Swifties,” have ruined the Super Bowl.

In my opinion, the NFL was the one who instigated all of this drama for the public. The hate also spiraled with the help of social media platforms, including Instagram posts by SportsCenter and ESPN.

When I looked at posts on my Instagram feed, most included Swift and her appearances at the games, and those posts drove people to express their anger and annoyance in the comments sections.

I have never been a Taylor Swift fan, even though some of her songs can be quite relatable. But some people have taken this issue too far. 

Of course, it is annoying to see her face all over billboards and game screens, but that isn’t her fault. If you take away her fame, Swift is just another girl who is trying to support her boyfriend. But instead, she gets dehumanized for doing so.

Midway through the NFL regular season, when Swift and Kelce made their relationship public, many posts I saw on social media were supportive. People were happy for both of them and some thought of them as the couple of the year. 

However, in my opinion, the NFL used their relationship as a way to attract business and viewers, and to increase its ratings.  According to a Jan. 10 Wall Street Journal article, “an average of 17.9 million people watched NFL games this season, according to Nielsen, a 7% increase from a year earlier. That is the highest regular-season average since 2015, the league said. Those figures include both television and streaming viewership.”

Taylor Swift’s face has been all over the news, across SportsCenter, ESPN, TikTok, Twitter (now X) and more. Is this annoying? I miss seeing game highlights, so the answer is yes for me. Instead, I’m flooded with posts not only from Swift’s Eras Tour but also sports posts of her.

I think the NFL knew what they were doing with this publicity stunt. 

Taylor Swift isn’t the one to blame. It’s not like she called up Roger Goodell and told him to post her face all over social media platforms and make her the poster child of the NFL. 

The Swifties and the NFL have taken this too far.  From now on, the league should focus on the game rather than a celebrity who is just now involved in the games. 

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