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2023 CMAs co-hosts Luke Bryan, Peyton Manning joke about Taylor Swift, Travis Kelce at award show

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Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning took a moment during the 2023 CMA Awards to share a light-hearted Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce joke.

Bryan and Manning – the 2023 CMA co-hosts – went back and forth during their opening monologue at Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday night.

“We’re back. You know what that means?” Manning asked Bryan. The country music star quickly replied, “Yep, Travis and Taylor weren’t available.”

Luke Bryan, Peyton Manning, Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce

Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning make a joke about Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce during the 2023 CMA Awards. (Getty Images)

Swift and Kelce have been dominating headlines since the world-famous singer first attended Kelce’s Kansas City Chief’s game in September.

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This is the second year the Bryan-Manning duo have hosted the CMA Awards. Manning didn’t hesitate to poke fun at a specific professional football team during his banter with Bryan.

“Luke, you know the difference between Taylor Swift and the New York Jets?” Peyton asked. “Uh, Taylor can sell out a stadium!” Bryan replied.

Taylor Swift wears sparkling jumpsuit on Eras Tour, Travis Kelce plays with Kansas City Chiegs

Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce have dominated headlines since she first attended his Kansas City Chiefs football game back in September. (Getty Images)

Manning jokingly told Bryan, “I had you do that punchline Luke so I don’t get in trouble.”

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In October, Bryan was a guest on Good Morning America where he revealed it wasn’t hard to get the duo to co-host the award show again. 

“I think literally we were walking off the stage last year and the CMAs were already trying to get us to come on board one more time and sign up again,” Bryan told the outlet, referencing the 2022 CMA Awards.

Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning at the CMA press conference

Bryan and Manning returned as the hosts of the CMA Awards in 2023. (Larry Fink)

At the time, Luke shed a little insight into how the duo planned to please the crowd this year. 

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“I think the main thing is just to be the master of ceremonies and let the music and the show and the artists speak for themselves,” he said. “Then, at some point, Peyton and I will have to try to come up with a couple funny jokes and poke a few people, but the bottom line is just be ourselves and really keep the people in the room engaged and the audience at home having fun and smiling.”

Lainey Wilson poses backstage with Jelly Roll

Jelly Roll and Lainey Wilson received CMA Awards on Wednesday night. (Kevin Mazur)

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Lainey Wilson won album of the year at the 2023 CMA Awards. Jelly Roll took home the new artist of the year on Wednesday night, marking his first ever CMA Award. Luke Combs took home the award for single of the year for his cover of “Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman.

Chapman, who won two Grammys for “Fast Car” in 1989, was not at the ceremony, but said in a statement that it’s “truly an honor for my song to be recognized 35 years after its debut.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report


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