Vikings CB Plans to Poke the Bear

Boyfriend Is Focal
Kelce Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce spoke about the University of Cincinnati during Super Bowl 57 Opening Night, saying "I’ve always been extremely prideful about coming from the University of Cincinnati. © Joe Rondone/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Travis Kelce ranks fourth all-time in the NFL on the receiving yards leaderboard among tight ends and probably isn’t a guy to mess with on Sundays.

Vikings CB Plans to Poke the Bear

He’s also dating (or kind of dating?) pop-culture icon and artist Taylor Swift, meaning SwiftMania is likely six days from engulfing Minneapolis.

Vikings CB Plans to Poke
Sep 24, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Taylor Swift reacts while watching the Kansas City Chiefs vs. Chicago Bears game during the first half at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports.

Well, one Vikings defender has a plan to combat Kelce + SwiftMania this weekend — exploit the connection and “get Kelce going.”

He’s Byron Murphy, a relatively new Vikings who apparently has the gift of gab.

Sep 14, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Minnesota Vikings cornerback Byron Murphy Jr. (7) against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports.

“I’m going to say something to him to get him going,” Murphy told reporters about his plan to irk Kelce, a future Hall of Famer.

Kelce and Swift have become close in recent weeks, with the popstar attending back-to-back Chiefs games and generally taking the NFL by storm. A substantial fraction of the NFL’s coverage in both Chiefs games has been allotted to video shots of Swift and her entourage in their suite.

Oct 1, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Taylor Swift talks with friends while arriving at MetLife Stadium before the game between the New York Jets and the Kansas City Chiefs. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports.

Murphy continued, “Oh man, the social media is going crazy. And I’m not hating against it. That’s the world we’re living in. Is she going to come to this game? We’re locked in, but that would be something. I’ve been watching her since I was a kid.”

The Vikings ended their winlessness on Sunday, downing the Carolina Panthers on the road by a score of 21-13. Minnesota’s defense finally showed up, creating a turnover for a touchdown, while Justin Jefferson and his two touchdowns took care of the rest.

Sep 24, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce (87) takes the field prior to a game against the Chicago Bears at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports.

“That would be cool, for sure. Not for him, because we’re going to try to get our hands on him in front of her,” Murphly concluded about his team’s matchup with the Super Bowl champions.

Swift, without the Chiefs roster, took over U.S. Bank Stadium in June, dazzling thousands on back-to-back nights with a concert(s) for the ages. And she might be back this Sunday, according to Murphy.

The last time the Vikings played the Chiefs, Kansas City was Mahomesless, nursing a knee injury, and QB2 Matt Moore found a way to topple Minnesota. That was in Kansas City in 2019, and this 2023 matchup gives the Vikings homefield advantage — but with Mahomes on the docket. Bittersweet, indeed.

The Chiefs are favored to prevail by 5.5 points, with or without Murphy’s planned trash talk.

Murhpy ranks 97th of 109 qualifying cornerbacks per Pro Football Focus through four games, with a 48.3 grade.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

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