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Matt Bushman talks reaching another Super Bowl, meeting Taylor Swift and his relationship with Travis Kelce

The former BYU tight end and Chiefs practice squad member could win a second Super Bowl ring with Kansas City this weekend

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Kansas City Chiefs tight end Matt Bushman during an preseason game against New Orleans, Sunday, Aug. 13, 2023, in New Orleans.

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Matt Bushman during an NFL preseason game against the New Orleans Saints, Sunday, Aug. 13, 2023, in New Orleans. The former BYU star is back at the Super Bowl this week, hoping to earn another ring.

Tyler Kaufman, Associated Press

LAS VEGAS — What a time to be alive for Matt Bushman.

The former BYU tight end is back at the Super Bowl with the Kansas City Chiefs in his second season with the franchise, with the Chiefs taking on the San Francisco 49ers in the 2024 Super Bowl on Sunday (4:30 p.m. MST, CBS) at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

“You don’t imagine going to one Super Bowl, then you do it and then you have ups and downs during the season and then all of a sudden the playoff Chiefs just get rolling and we’re here again. So it’s incredible.” — Matt Bushman

During Monday’s Super Bowl Opening Night event, Bushman shared his gratitude about being a part of another team that has reached the Super Bowl — this year, Kansas City could become the first team to win back-to-back Super Bowls since the New England Patriots did so during the 2003 and 2004 seasons.

“Yeah. Never would have thought we’d be back here. It’s incredible,” Bushman told the Deseret News in an exclusive interview. 

“You don’t imagine going to one Super Bowl, then you do it and then you have ups and downs during the season and then all of a sudden the playoff Chiefs just get rolling and we’re here again. So it’s incredible.”

Bushman has spent the majority of time this year on the Chiefs’ practice squad, with star Travis Kelce, Blake Bell and Noah Gray on the active roster at tight end. 

The 28-year-old Bushman, who played his first season with the Las Vegas Raiders and played in a pair of regular-season games as a rookie, made his regular-season debut with Kansas City in Week 1 this season with Kelce ailing. Bushman played seven offensive snaps in the win over the Detroit Lions.

Through his first pair of seasons in Kansas City, the 6-foot-5 Bushman’s role has largely been behind the scenes as a practice squad member while playing for another former BYU graduate, Chiefs coach Andy Reid, of whom Bushman said “you just want to be your best self around him,” as Reid chases his third Super Bowl ring as a head coach this weekend.

Bushman will be on the sideline for the game, as he was last year, cheering on his teammates.

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Kansas City Chiefs tight end Matt Bushman, a former BYU Cougar, talks with the Deseret News on Monday, Feb. 5, 2024, during the Super Bowl Opening Night event at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

Brandon Judd, Deseret News

One would be remiss, though, to not ask Bushman about the famous tight end/celebrity connection that is engulfing the Chiefs this season.

The buzz around Kansas City this year has revolved around the relationship between Kelce and Taylor Swift, the 14-time Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter.

Turns out, Bushman and his wife Emily, the daughter of former BYU tight end Chad Lewis and a former Cougar volleyball player, got the chance to meet Swift on New Year’s, thanks to Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes.

“That was a lot of fun. So Pat hosted the team, invited everyone for the New Year’s, for a New Year’s party and Travis and Taylor ended up being there. It was fun getting to meet her,” Bushman said. 

“My wife’s always been a fan of Taylor Swift, so it’s been an awesome season for her, too, because she’s been able to, you know, we met her that one time but it’s just the whole Swifties taking over Chiefs Kingdom is cool.”

Bushman, when asked what his favorite Swift song is, went old school.

“Someone just asked me that. And the first one that came to mind was her old like ‘Our Song,’ one of the classics I guess. My wife and I, that could be our song from now on,” Bushman said.

“What you see is what you get, he’s the class clown, but he’s also a great mentor. I’ve just tried to soak up all the information and stuff on the field. It’s priceless to learn, so I feel like I’ve grown a lot as a player just learning from him.” — Matt Bushman on Travis Kelce

A little closer to the football field, though, Bushman has soaked up the opportunity to not only build up a friendship with Kelce but learn from one of the game’s premier tight ends — Kelce is a nine-time Pro Bowler and four-time first-team All-Pro since entering the NFL as a third-round draft pick in 2013.

“In college, you look up to the best tight end so I was trying to learn from Travis his game at the college level. Then all of a sudden, I end up being in the locker room with him. It’s been super cool just to see his personality, see who he is all the time,” Bushman said. 

“What you see is what you get, he’s the class clown, but he’s also a great mentor. I’ve just tried to soak up all the information and stuff on the field. It’s priceless to learn, so I feel like I’ve grown a lot as a player just learning from him.”

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Kansas City Chiefs tight ends Matt Bushman (49) and Travis Kelce talk during the team’s organized team activities Thursday, June 8, 2023, in Kansas City, Mo.

Charlie Riedel, Associated Press