NFL’s Shannon Sharpe on How Travis Kelce Handles Taylor Swift ‘Scrutiny’

After mentoring Travis Kelce, Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe says the tight end is more than prepared for the attention that comes with dating pop superstar Taylor Swift.

“I don’t know her personally, but for him — knowing him the way I do — I don’t think he involves himself with somebody that’s not of the highest quality and a person of good character,” Sharpe, 55, exclusively told Us Weekly while promoting his upcoming Super Bowl commercial with OIKOS. “I think they make a cute couple.”

Kelce’s star has been on the rise in recent years amid his professional success playing for the Kansas City Chiefs and competing against his brother, Jason Kelce, in the 2023 Super Bowl LVII. However, Sharpe knows that dating Swift brought the 34-year-old athlete to a new level of recognizability.

“I think he’s handled it well,” Sharpe said. “As long as you understand the main thing is the main thing. Don’t forget now: you’re a football player. Now, I understand that he’s dating Taylor Swift, and she’s as big as we have in the universe, but your job still requires you to be great at playing the game of football. And I think he’s done a great job of that.”

Sharpe believes Travis’ talent was always bound to attract attention. “When you are great, you’re used to being in the spotlight. Now, this is a different type of spotlight,” the former Broncos tight end told Us. “It’s a lot hotter when you deal with someone of her magnitude. I think she’s great. … I’m very excited for him, but I think he’s done a great job because he understands the scrutiny that was going to come along with it.”

NFL s Shannon Sharpe on How Travis Kelce Handles Taylor Swift Scrutiny

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Swift, 34, started dating Travis last summer and took their relationship public when she started attending Chiefs games in the fall. While some of the “dads, Brads and Chads,” as the singer recently dubbed them, take issue with Swift’s attendance, Sharpe said her presence isn’t a distraction.

“They lose a game, [some will say] it’s because of her; And they win a game, [some will ask], ‘Why [are] the cameras on her?’ But I like it,” Sharpe said. “I like it for him. I like her being at the game. She brings a different set of eyeballs to the game. There are a lot of young girls and women that are watching the NFL football that could care less about that. And so the NFL’s, like, ‘Hey, if we get new eyeballs, we get new customers, we’re onboard.’ But the increased attention, I think he’s handled it very well.”

NFL s Shannon Sharpe on How Travis Kelce Handles Taylor Swift Scrutiny

Courtesy of OIKOS

For his part, Travis said in a pre-AFC Championship press conference that he and his girlfriend are tuning out the critics. “As long as we’re happy, we can’t listen to anything that’s outside noise,” he said.

While Sharpe and Travis have a great bond, don’t assume Sharpe will be wearing a Chiefs jersey at Super Bowl LVIII. While the three-time Super Bowl champ recently received a box of Chiefs Kingdom gear from his one-time mentee, he isn’t too comfortable repping a team he never played for.

“It’s hard for me being a Bronco to rock Chiefs gear,” Sharpe, who finished his NFL career with the Broncos after a brief stint on the Baltimore Ravens, admitted.

No matter who he roots for, he will definitely be watching the big game — and keeping an eye out for his OIKOS cameo. He and Martin Lawrence team up for a round of golf in the ad, and all is well until they accidentally submerge the golf cart in a water hazard. Thankfully, OIKOS Pro has 20 grams of protein to help them fuel their strength and save the day.

Sharpe said he cherished the experience. “I’m next to Martin Lawrence,” Sharpe gushed of the commercial. “To get an opportunity to be next to greatness. I’ve been around greatness in the athletic realm, but I do understand greatness is greatness. And to see him operate and his space was unbelievable for me, and I had a great time shooting this OIKOS spot.”

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See the OIKOS ad when Super Bowl LVIII airs on CBS Sunday, February 11.

With reporting by Christina Garibaldi

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