Aaron Rodgers spent time during his end-of-year availability Monday begging for the Jets and his teammates’ priority to be on football, and football only.
“The bulls—t that has nothing to do with winning needs to get out of the building,” he said.
The next day, he appeared on the Pat McAfee Show, where he is paid $1 million per appearance (who says journalism is dead?) and refused to apologize about previous comments directed at late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel last week, suggesting that his name would appear on documents linking him to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
Better known as the Epstein List, which includes the names of over 150 people who consorted with the now-deceased and disgraced former financier, Rodgers’ baseless claim made last week on McAfee’s show started a multi-layered feud.
“That’s supposed to be coming out soon,” Rodgers said. “There’s a lot of people, including Jimmy Kimmel, who are really hoping that doesn’t come out.”
Kimmel swung back.
“For the record, I’ve not met, flown with, visited, or had any contact whatsoever with Epstein, nor will you find my name on any ‘list’ other than the clearly-phony nonsense that soft-brained wackos like yourself can’t seem to distinguish from reality,” Kimmel said “Your reckless words put my family in danger. Keep it up and we will debate the facts further in court.”
ESPN spokesman Mike Foss went as far as to say the Jets quarterback’s comments on an ESPN-aired show were “dumb and factually inaccurate.”
While McAfee apologized, Rodgers on Tuesday refused, though he added that “I’m not calling him [a pedophile] and neither should you.
“Let me make that crystal clear,” he continued. “I don’t take any excitement or joy out of anybody doing that. So don’t do that in my name. Don’t do that at all. Those are serious accusations meant for people who are on the list.”
This all seems rather hypocritical, doesn’t it?
The future Hall of Famer preaching the necessities that go into winning goes directly against his sentiments less than 24 hours later. It’s nothing new, either.
In his first year with the Jets alone, which lasted all of four snaps after tearing his ACL, he got into it with Kansas City Chiefs star tight end Travis Kelce over the COVID-19 vaccine. Rodgers is anti-vaccine and dubbed Kelce, who has promoted the COVID vaccine for Pfizer, as “Mr. Pfizer.”
He even challenged Kelce to a vaccine debate after the Chiefs tight end called Rodgers out for playing on the Woody Johnson-owned Jets. Johnson is an heir of Johnson & Johnson, one of the big pharma titans who rolled out a COVID vaccine. Of course, that’s one of the same big pharma brands that, according to Rodgers, conspired against him with the sports media to vilify him for not receiving the COVID vaccine and then lying about it back in 2021.
In his pursuit of rejecting modern medicine, Rodgers has continued consulting with his own doctors, which included the experimental SpeedBridge surgery that the 40-year-old consistently teased would get him back on the field before the end of the 2023 season.
By Week 16 with the Jets out of playoff contention, his comeback hopes were put on ice.
This is not to take sides on what one thinks is right or wrong. I’m still of the belief that, within reason, everyone is entitled to their opinion even if it is unpopular.
But Rodgers cannot put forth a sanctimonious front and implore to get all the “bulls—t” out of the locker room to create a legitimate winning culture at One Jets Drive and continue to take the focus away from the game or the organization. Especially after a season lost to injury in just four plays, and with his impending return in a make-or-break, win-now 2024 campaign.
Long story short, if Rodgers wants to cut the bulls—t out of the Jets locker room, he can start by cutting off its biggest source: Himself.