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Aaron Rodgers Details NFL Protocols After Admitting He’s Unvaccinated Despite ‘Immunized’ Statement

Aaron Rodgers Details NFL Protocols After Admitting He's Unvaccinated Despite 'Immunized' Statement

Aaron Rodgers is detailing the NFL’s protocols surrounding COVID-19 after confirming he is not vaccinated, despite earlier comments about being “immunized.”

In an interview with the Pat McAfee Show on Friday, the Green Bay Packers quarterback said he and other unvaccinated players are subject to rigorous safety requirements, which he described as “Draconian measures” that “in my opinion were not based on science.”

Unvaccinated team members must undergo COVID-19 testing each day and cannot enter the Packers’ facilities until they’ve received a negative test, Rodgers said, adding that he wears a mask whenever he is inside the facilities and is required to “physically distance” from teammates.

“I have major travel restrictions,” he continued. “So, I can’t leave the hotel. I can’t have dinner with teammates, even though I tested negative that morning to even get on the flight. The only people I see at the hotel are vaccinated people, but I have to wear a mask the entire time.”

Other protocols he detailed included working out “off to the side” in the weight room with a mask on, and being barred from using the sauna.

Rodgers, 37, also said unvaccinated players must “wear a yellow wristband at all times” indicating their status.

The NFL currently does not require players to be fully vaccinated against COVID, but specific mandates from teams and venues vary due to local city and state laws. The Packers do not require vaccinations at their home stadium, Lambeau Field.

Earlier this week, Rodgers was placed on the Packers’ reserve/COVID-19 list. The team’s coach Matt LaFleur would not confirm if Rodgers had tested positive for the virus — despite multiple outlets reporting he had — during a press conference, only stating that the athlete was in COVID-19 protocols. He also said he did not know when Rodgers would return to play.

At the time, outlets and journalists including ESPNNFL Network Insider’s Ian Rapoport and NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported that Rodgers was unvaccinated. The reports were surprising, as in August Rodgers had told reporters and news outlets that he’d “been immunized” ahead of the upcoming season for which some players have refused to get the vaccine.

“There’s guys on the team that haven’t been vaccinated and it’s a personal decision, not going to judge those guys,” the one-time Jeopardy! guest host added at the time.

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During Friday’s show, Rodgers confirmed he had contracted the virus and said he “didn’t lie in the initial press conference.”

The athlete said he was allergic to an ingredient in the mRNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna), and did not want to receive the Johnson & Johnson shot because, he claimed, “I had heard of multiple people who had had adverse events around getting the J&J.”

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Claiming he did extensive research and consulted with doctors, he said he found “there was an immunization protocol that I could go through to best protect myself and my teammates.”

Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers
| Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty

In describing that protocol, Rodgers said he had taken ivermectin, a drug used foremost to treat or prevent parasites in animals. The FDA has not authorized or approved the drug for use in treating or preventing COVID-19, and in cases where it was taken, people have been hospitalized.

“The league was fully aware of it upon my return to the Packers,” he said of the NFL knowing he was unvaccinated. “It was at that point that I petitioned them to accept my immunization status as under their vaccination protocol. At the time, they had only had the big three is what they were going to do.”

Rodgers said that the league had denied his petition to be considered under the vaccination protocol with his regimen, so he was continuing to follow the unvaccinated guidelines.

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