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Aaron Rodgers shares beliefs about COVID-19 vaccine, says Packers were aware of status

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) looks to pass the ball during the first half...
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) looks to pass the ball during the first half of an NFL football game against the Washington Football Team, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Kamil Krzaczynski)(Kamil Krzaczynski | AP)
Published: Nov. 5, 2021 at 1:55 PM EDT|Updated: Nov. 5, 2021 at 3:24 PM EDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers shared his beliefs about the COVID-19 vaccine Friday in his first public comments since testing positive for the virus.

Rodgers appeared on the the Pat McAfee Show where he stated that his personal health decisions should be private and said he’s been a victim of shaming from a “woke mob” and victim of a “witch hunt.” He said there are “blatant lies” about him in the media right now.

Rodgers opened by saying he has an allergy to an ingredient in the mRNA vaccines--Pfizer and Moderna--and that’s part of the reason he didn’t get vaccinated. He said he did not want to get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine because of some reports of blood clots in people who got the J&J shot. The CDC has recommended the J&J vaccine, saying clotting is rare.

“My medical team advised me that my chances of getting an adverse event was greater than my chances of getting COVID,” Rodgers said.

Rodgers says the Packers organization and his teammates are aware of his vaccination status. He said he didn’t lie to the public in August when he was asked if he was vaccinated and responded that he was “immunized.”

“It wasn’t some sort of ruse or lie, it was the truth,” Rodgers said. He said he would’ve explained if there was a follow up.

“I didn’t lie in the initial press conference. During that time it was a very witch hunt going on a cross the league when everybody in the media was so concerned about who was vaccinated and who wasn’t and what that meant and who was being selfish and who was talking about it and what it meant if they said it was a personal decision. They shouldn’t have to disclose their own medical information and what not,” Rodgers said.

“I wanted it to go away. Everybody in the organization knew I wasn’t vaccinated. I was trying to mitigate having this conversation going on and on,” Rodgers said.

Rodgers said he petitioned the league to accept his immunization status, but they declined and said he would be placed in the unvaccinated category. He says the league was fully aware of his status as he returned to the Packers. Rodgers called NFL protocol for the unvaccinated “draconian measures.”

“I looked into and talked to a lot of medical individuals and professionals and found there was an immunization protocol I could go through to best protect myself and my teammates and it was a long-term protocol that involved multiple months, and I’m very proud of the research that went into that,” Rodgers said.

Rodgers says he’s “done his own research” and says he believes in natural immunity. He denied being a COVID denier and doesn’t suggest people should not get vaccinated. Rodgers says he wears a mask in public and follows NFL protocols for the unvaccinated.

“Personal health decisions, in my opinion, should be private,” Rodgers said. “Bodily autonomy is a right.”

Rodgers says he’s been communicating with radio show host Joe Rogan, who has voiced skepticism about the vaccine. Rodgers says he takes monoclonal antibodies, ivermectin and Zinc.

The National Institutes for Health says ivermectin is not recommended for the treatment of COVID-19.

“There is insufficient evidence for the COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines Panel (the Panel) to recommend either for or against the use of ivermectin for the treatment of COVID-19. Results from adequately powered, well-designed, and well-conducted clinical trials are needed to provide more specific, evidence-based guidance on the role of ivermectin in the treatment of COVID-19.”

The CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccines as safe and effective. CLICK HERE to learn more about the vaccine.

Rodgers has been in a promotional partnership with Prevea Health for years. After his comments, a Prevea Health spokesperson responded to Action 2 News with a one-sentence statement: “Our focus at this time remains steadfast on the health and safety of our patients, providers, staff and communities, as well as on our efforts to help and encourage all eligible to become vaccinated for COVID-19 for the health and safety of all.”

Rodgers has to sit out for at least 10 days and have two negative COVID-19 tests in 24 hours, meaning he’ll miss Sunday’s game in Kansas City. Jordan Love will start at quarterback Sunday.

The soonest Rodgers could return to the Packers is Saturday, Nov. 13, one day before the Packers host the Seattle Seahawks at Lambeau Field.

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