Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has tested positive for COVID-19—and multiple reports say that he’s still unvaccinated, despite Rodgers strongly suggesting over the summer that he’d been jabbed.
The positive result means Rodgers will miss Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs, as will practice quarterback Kurt Benkert, who also tested positive, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported. That will leave the team solely with Jordan Love, who joined last year, to start the game. Rodgers will be eligible to return on Nov. 13 after a 10-day quarantine.
Rodgers has yet to clarify his vaccination status himself, but NFL Network reported Wednesday that he has not received a shot.
That’s despite the player being asked at an Aug. 26 press conference if he was vaccinated, and responding, “Yeah, I’ve been immunized.” He said at the time he was not going to judge teammates who opted not to receive a shot. “It’s a personal decision,” he said.
Packers Coach Mike LeFleur would not confirm Rodgers’ vaccination status during a Wednesday press conference, stating a player’s status was “their own personal decision.” He also said he “hoped” Love was ready to fill Rodgers’ shoes.
The Daily Beast’s requests for comment to Rodgers were not immediately returned on Wednesday.
According to ESPN, Rodgers reportedly tried to submit another form of treatment to the NFL as a substitute for getting vaccinated, but he was not permitted to do so. He then agreed to wear a mask while inside the team’s headquarters but was permitted to attend media briefings unmasked—despite a team practice of having unvaccinated players attend via Zoom.
If he is unvaccinated, Rodgers has not followed the NFL’s safety protocols for unvaccinated players even as recently as this weekend. A video from over the weekend showed Rodgers—dressed as Keanu Reeves’ John Wick—dancing and waving his prop gun to rapper Pooh Sheisty’s “Twerksum” while at a team Halloween party. The video was posted by TE Marcedes Lewis, whose vaccination status is also unclear.
According to the league, those who attend indoor gatherings with other players without wearing personal protective equipment—which Rodgers was not—face a fine of $14,650. Attending an “indoor concert/entertainment event” will also incur a fine of $14,650.”
LeFleur said the team has adhered to all NFL COVID-19 protocols for players regardless of vaccination status. “We have cameras everywhere,” he said. He wouldn’t comment on the Halloween party, saying he didn’t know who attended it, so he couldn’t answer any questions about it.
When asked why Rodgers characterized himself as “immunized,” LeFleur responded, “That’s a great question for Aaron.”
At the Aug. 26 press conference, reporters clearly thought Rodgers’ “immunized” comment meant he was vaccinated. In a follow-up question, a reporter asked if Rodgers made that decision because it was important to him to be available to play and important to him “from an example-setting standpoint?”
He responded, “I mean, no, it wasn’t about that. I think I like to learn about everything that I’m doing and, you know, there was a lot of research that even went into that.”