Green Bay Packers quarterback and reigning NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers appeared on the Pat McAfee Show Friday to discuss his vaccination status after he tested positive for COVID-19 this week and it was revealed he was unvaccinated.
It was major news that Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19, but when it was reported he was unvaccinated, meaning he could miss extra time, the story became much larger. Rodgers claimed lies have been told and reported about him this week.
"I realize I'm in the crosshairs of the woke mob right now," Rodgers said on Friday's Pat McAfee Show. "So before my final nail gets put in my cancel culture casket, I think I would like to set the record straight on so many of the blatant lies that are out there about myself."
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Much of the issue after it was reported earlier this week by NFL Network that Rodgers was unvaccinated is that he was asked by reporters in August about his vaccination status. Rodgers said at that time he was "immunized" and did not explain, which many or most took to believe he was vaccinated against COVID-19.
Rodgers said in the appearance on the Pat McAfee Show, which he makes a regular appearance on every Tuesday during the NFL season, that the Packers and his teammates knew that he was unvaccinated and that he was not "hiding" it.
Rodgers claimed that he is not anti-vaccine and he said that he is allergic to an ingredient in the Pfizer and Moderna and was advised not to take them, which left the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. He said it was not an option at that point due to reported blood clotting side effects earlier this year.
That led Rodgers to go through an "immunization protocol" that took several months, he said.
"The league was fully aware of it upon my return to the Packers," Rodgers said. "It was at that point that I petitioned them to accept my immunization status under their vaccination protocol."
His petition was ultimately not accepted and he was considered unvaccinated by the league.
Rodgers called the NFL's rules against unvaccinated players at that time, "draconian."
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"They were based in a shame-based environment to try to get as many guys vaccinated as possible so that the league looks better to the rest of the world. That was the focus of these protocols," Rodgers said.
Rodgers went on to explain problems he had with how vaccinated vs. unvaccinated people are grouped or compared.
He also talked about how he has discussed COVID-19-related treatment with Joe Rogan, who has come under fire in recent months for the way he has addressed COVID-19 and treatment related to the virus in his podcast.
The NFL will be investigating how Rodgers and the Packers may have violated COVID-19 protocols for unvaccinated players following Rodgers' positive test. The rules for unvaccinated players are vastly different for those that are vaccinated, and since Rodgers' vaccination status was reported on, there have been questions about protocols he may have violated as recently as last weekend.
It's unlikely the league would suspend Rodgers, but they will likely level fines on both the Packers and Rodgers if it is found that he and they violated protocols.
Rodgers will miss Sunday's game against the Chiefs. Backup QB Jordan Love, who the Packers selected in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, will start in place of Rodgers.
You can find the clips from the interview on the Pat McAfee show below: