Sports | November 8, 2021 1:05 pm

Report: Aaron Rodgers Wouldn’t Talk to NFL’s Infectious Disease Consultant

The Packers quarterback was apparently offered a meeting with league doctors to supplement his "research" into vaccines. He declined.

Aaron Rodgers watches the Packers against the Arizona Cardinals
Aaron Rodgers watches the Packers against the Arizona Cardinals.
Christian Petersen/Getty

In his extremely informative appearance on the Pat McAfee Show on Friday, Aaron Rodgers said he “put a lot of time and energy into research” and “met with a lot of different people in the medical field to get the most information” before making the decision to get “immunized” instead of vaccinated against COVID-19.

If Rodgers, who missed Sunday’s game after testing positive for COVID-19 last week, actually did speak to any doctors to get information to inform his choice, none of them worked for the National Football League.

Per Albert Breer of SI’s Monday Morning Quarterback, the 37-year-old was offered the chance to speak with a number of NFL doctors and turned down the opportunity. “I’m told the league offered him the opportunity to talk to the NFL/NFLPA joint infectious disease consultant and/or the league’s chief medical officer, Dr. Allen Sills, and he didn’t take the NFL up on the offer,” Breer writes. “That was after the league found, in the words of one source, that Rodgers’s ‘homeopathic therapy doesn’t provide any protection that’s supported by science at all.”’

Likely because of Rodgers’s making decisions that included hitting up comedian podcaster Joe Rogan for medical advice (as the QB mentioned on Friday), a Wisconsin health care company has ended its nine-year partnership with the reigning NFL MVP.

“Prevea Health remains deeply committed to protecting its patients, staff, providers and communities amidst the COVID-19 pandemic,” the company said in a statement. “This includes encouraging and helping all eligible populations to become vaccinated against COVID-19 to prevent the virus from further significantly impacting lives and livelihoods.”

Like Prevea, State Farm also appears to be walking back its relationship with Rodgers, as he was featured in just 1.5% of the insurance company’s nearly 400 ads on TV on Sunday after appearing in about 25% of the firm’s ads over the two previous Sundays during NFL action, according to data from Apex Marketing. The reduction was likely reactionary.

“It would be inappropriate for us to comment on Aaron’s vaccination status,” a State Farm spokeswoman told Ad Age. “This weekend our marketing focuses on the success of our first-ever Team State Farm Football Find and the unveiling of a new commercial with NFL legend Terry Bradshaw.”

Interestingly enough, Bradshaw ripped into Rodgers while broadcasting from the Naval Academy in Maryland as part of Fox’s standard NFL coverage on Sunday. “I’d give Aaron Rodgers some advice,” Bradshaw said. “It would have been nice if he’d just come to the Naval Academy and learned how to be honest. Learned not to lie. Because that’s what you did, Aaron. You lied to everyone. We are a divided nation politically. We are a divided nation on the COVID-19 whether or not to take the vaccine. And unfortunately, we’ve got players that pretty much think only about themselves. And I’m extremely disappointed in the actions of Aaron Rodgers.”

Following all of this off-field drama, look for Rodgers, who received the nickname “Karen Rodgers” in some circles, to return to the field and play on Sunday. Though he can’t return to Green Bay’s facility until at least Saturday due to the COVID-19 rules, the team is confident they can get the longtime QB ready to play against Seattle without getting him physical reps in practice. If Rodgers tests negative, he’ll be back for the Packers. For State Farm, his future is less certain.