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Aaron Rodgers was secretly unvaccinated, will not play on Sunday because he has COVID-19: Report
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Aaron Rodgers was secretly unvaccinated, will not play on Sunday because he has COVID-19: Report

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers will not play Sunday agains the Kansas City Chiefs after he reportedly tested positive for COVID-19.

Rodgers, according to sources, was never vaccinated against the highly contagious respiratory disease, despite insisting that he was "immunized" in August.

Rodgers' purported diagnosis and vaccination status also call into question his eligibility to play in the Packers' Nov. 14 game against the Seattle Seahawks.

What are the details?

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport on Wednesday tweeted, "#Packers QB Aaron Rodgers is unvaccinated, per me and @MikeGarafolo. That's why he is out for Sunday vs. the #Chiefs."

Following the tweet, a variety of outlets reported that Rodgers was never vaccinated.

Rapoport added, "QB Aaron Rodgers received homeopathic treatment from his personal doctor to raise his antibody levels and asked the NFL to review his status. The NFL, NFLPA and joint docs ruled him as unvaccinated. Now, he has COVID-19."

'9-Time Pro Bowler has not, in fact, been vaccinated'

Around the NFL's Nick Shook also reported that 2020 first-round pick Jordan Love will start in Rodgers' place.

Rodgers reportedly must spend a mandatory 10 days away from team members, according to the NFL's COVID-19 protocol.

"Rodgers previously had sought and was denied an exemption from the NFL-NFLPA COVID-19 protocols based on his antibody levels this summer, which left his status as unvaccinated, NFL Media reported Wednesday," Shook reported. "Rodgers received homeopathic treatment from his personal doctor to raise his antibody levels and asked the NFL to review his status. The league pointed Rodgers to the NFL-NFLPA protocols, which do not account for such an exemption for players."

Packers coach Matt LaFleur was asked if Rodgers' August comment may have been misleading, to which he replied, "It's a great question for Aaron, I'm not going to comment on it."

When asked if he believed Rodgers was selfish for not getting the vaccine, LaFleur responded, "I think everybody has to make their own personal decision, and that's just is what it is."

USA Today corroborated the report on Wednesday afternoon.

"After Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, a person with knowledge of the situation confirmed to the USA TODAY Network that the nine-time Pro Bowler has not, in fact, been vaccinated," USA Today's Tom Schad wrote. "The person was granted anonymity because they were not permitted to speak publicly about the matter."

'Immunized' against COVID-19

In August, Rodgers told reporters that he was "immunized" against COVID-19.

At the time, he said he believed the decision to vaccinate or not was a "personal decision."

"Yeah, I've been immunized," Rodgers told reporters. "There's guys on the team that haven't been vaccinated. I think it's a personal decision, I'm not gonna judge those guys."

Rodgers has yet to publicly speak about the reports that he is unvaccinated.

What else?

NBC Sports' Mike Florio cited Rodgers' August remarks and wrote, "So, basically, he lied. He lied in order to hide the fact that he's not vaccinated."

"And it wasn't just his cagey use of the term 'immunized,' followed by his vow to not judge a group to which he secretly belonged," Florio continued. "A G.M. with another team tried to tell me weeks ago that Rodgers isn't vaccinated. I looked up photos of Rodgers from the preseason, standing on the sideline in street clothes. ... He wasn't wearing a mask. I told my source that this means that Rodgers was vaccinated. In actuality, it means that he was deliberately and flagrantly violating COVID policies to create the impression that he's vaccinated."

Florio added that he wasn't aware of any consequences Rodgers might have faced in connection with the report — and said that Rodgers creatively danced around reports that he wasn't vaccinated in order to avoid controversy.

"If he'd been open about his unvaccinated status, he would have heard about it from the media," he wrote. "And so the guy who is so sensitive that he's sensitive about being called sensitive chose to create the false impression that he's vaccinated, all because he didn't want anyone to call him out for not being vaccinated. That makes it much worse. He deliberately violated COVID protocols in order to keep secret his status — in order to avoid being criticized. And he surely will now use his various platforms to argue that people like me shouldn't have a platform to criticize him for not being vaccinated, and for endangering others in order to perpetrate his ruse. Which is exactly what he did."

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Sarah Taylor

Sarah Taylor

Sarah is a former staff writer for TheBlaze, and a former managing editor and producer at TMZ. She resides in Delaware with her family. You can reach her via Twitter at @thesarahdtaylor.