In the preseason, some quarterbacks made no bones about their unvaccinated status. Others hid it.
Most notably, Aaron Rodgers managed to conceal that he is not vaccinated (until he tested positive for COVID on Wednesday). According to NFL Media, Rodgers is indeed not vaccinated.
Rodgers led reporters to believe in August that he’s vaccinated. Technically, he said he’s been “immunized.” But he clearly implied that he’s been vaccinated, because he said in the next breath that he won’t chastise teammates who aren’t vaccinated.
“Yeah, I’ve been immunized,” Rodgers said in August. “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.”
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. 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. (The photo attached to this article comes from one of those games.) 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.
What other protocols did he violate? Was he fined for it? How often was he fined? What other consequences were imposed or threatened?
And why? Why not just be openly unvaccinated?
Here’s why. Rodgers abhors criticism. If he’d been open about his unvaccinated status, he would have heard about it from the media. 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.