Of her bond with McCaffrey, Culpo tells PEOPLE, "It's really easy for us, so I'm grateful"

By Adam Carlson
December 08, 2019 11:02 PM

If those sweet social media posts weren’t proof enough, things between Olivia Culpo and professional football player Christian McCaffrey are “really great,” she tells PEOPLE.

The model and TV personality, 27, says she and McCaffrey, a 23-year-old running back for the Carolina Panthers, have been together for about six months.

“We have so much in common,” she said Sunday night ahead of the 2019 Miss Universe competition, where she — a former Miss Universe herself — joined Vanessa Lachey as backstage correspondents along with host Steve Harvey.

Of her bond with McCaffrey, she tells PEOPLE, “It’s really easy for us, so I’m grateful.”

The two were first linked earlier this year, according to reports: Sports writer Dov Kleiman said they followed each other on Instagram in April and the two were soon liking one another’s photos, according to Page Six.

In July, the two were spotted on a getaway to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and they haven’t been exactly shy about their feelings since then.

From left: Olivia Culpo and Christian McCaffrey
| Credit: Rodin Eckenroth/FilmMagic; Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

As Page Six noted, Culpo has posted repeatedly on her Instagram Story about spending time with McCaffrey, including last month when he shouted-out her upcoming Sports Illustrated Swimsuit shoot. Weeks later, Culpo posted to her Story to share a bit of a recent FaceTime call with him from the locker room. (And in October, she showed off some Panthers-themed nails.)

Before dating McCaffrey, Culpo sparked romance rumors with DJ Zedd earlier this year.

She was previously with Detroit Lions player Danny Amendola, though they split in 2018. While they were spotted together after that, things eventually fell apart — and he ranted about her at length on Instagram, in a since-deleted post which he then called a “miscommunication.”

Ahead of Sunday’s Miss Universe, Culpo told PEOPLE she was “nervous, definitely,” but was ready for whatever was coming her way.

“This is probably the biggest thing I’ve hosted live, but I’m with Vanessa and we know each other and I think it’ll be fun,” she said, adding with a laugh, “If I mess up, she’ll just fix it.”