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Taylor Swift says she was dating Travis Kelce long before her first Chiefs game: 'No one knew'

"We would never be psychotic enough to hard-launch a first date."

After rumors, paparazzi photos, and podcast recordings galore, Taylor Swift is finally opening up about the subject on everyone’s lips: her relationship with NFL star Travis Kelce.

Swift, who was named Time's 2023 Person of the Year on Wednesday, not only discussed the public's reaction to their ongoing romance, but revealed that their dating timeline cannot be measured in football games alone.

“This all started when Travis very adorably put me on blast on his podcast, which I thought was metal as hell,” Swift recalled, referencing the July episode of Kelce’s New Heights show in which he bemoaned his missed opportunity to give her a friendship bracelet with his phone number. “We started hanging out right after that.”

While it seemed that their relationship began when Swift accepted an invitation to attend his Sept. 24 game at Arrowhead Stadium, this wasn’t the case. In fact, a window of privacy was an important element of their then-budding romance.

“We actually had a significant amount of time that no one knew, which I’m grateful for, because we got to get to know each other,” Swift said. “By the time I went to that first game, we were a couple. I think some people think that they saw our first date at that game? We would never be psychotic enough to hard-launch a first date.”

<p>Gotham/GC Images</p> Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift

Gotham/GC Images

Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift

Swift continued, “When you say a relationship is public, that means I’m going to see him do what he loves. We’re showing up for each other, other people are there, and we don’t care. The opposite of that is you have to go to an extreme amount of effort to make sure no one knows that you’re seeing someone. And we’re just proud of each other.”

Before dating Kelce, Swift was in a six-year relationship with actor Joe Alwyn. The couple announced their split in April.

While the singer hasn't exactly been silent about her relationship with the Kansas City Chiefs tight end (she recently shouted him out with a lyric change during a performance for her Eras Tour), she feels self-conscious about the attention it attracts — especially while attending his football games.

“I don’t know how they know what suite I’m in,” she said. “There’s a camera, like, a half-mile away, and you don’t know where it is, and you have no idea when the camera is putting you in the broadcast, so I don’t know if I’m being shown 17 times or once.”

Swift's frequent attendance at Kansas City Chiefs games threw both Swifties and NFL fans for a loop, and captured the world's attention. A game she attended in October was one of the most-watched Sunday shows since the Super Bowl. It even inspired a Saturday Night Live sketch poking fun at the NFL's obsession with her constant presence. Kelce, who has been vocal about the NFL "overdoing it" with its coverage, made a surprise cameo to deliver the punchline.

“I’m just there to support Travis," Swift told Time. "I have no awareness of if I’m being shown too much and pissing off a few dads, Brads, and Chads.”

As for her thoughts on the sport, she joked, “Football is awesome, it turns out. I’ve been missing out my whole life.”

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