Fox viewers won’t see the Kansas City defense try to sack Aaron Rodgers on Sunday. Before the games began, however, Fox viewers got a chance to see a quartet of Hall of Famers verbally give him the business, from the Naval Academy in Annapolis.
Terry Bradshaw had the most pointed critique of Rodgers, who someday will join Bradshaw, Howie Long, Michael Strahan, and Jimmy Johnson in Canton.
“I’ll give Aaron Rodgers some advice,” Bradshaw said. “It would have been nice if he had just come to the Naval Academy and learned how to be honest. Learned not to lie. Because that’s what you did, Aaron. You lied to everyone. I understand ‘immunized.’ What you were doing was taking stuff that would keep you from getting COVID-19. You got COVID-19. Ivermectin is a cattle dewormer. Sorry, folks, that’s what it is. We are a divided nation politically. We are a divided nation on the COVID-19, whether or not to take the vaccine. And unfortunately, we’ve got players that pretty much think only about themselves. And I’m extremely disappointed in the actions of Aaron Rodgers.”
(Bradshaw, by the way, stars in a new State Farm commericial that is scheduled to debut today. Rodgers and State Farm have a longstanding partnership.)
Michael Strahan, whose Fox platform is supplemented by a weekday seat at the Good Morning America table, chastised Rodgers for his verbal “workaround” by using the term “immunized.”
“In the grand scheme of things, it’s deceptive and it’s wrong,” Strahan said. “And the presentation that he did did not help.”
Strahan also pointed out that this was not an appropriate occasion to quote Martin Luther King, Jr., something Rodgers did on Friday to justify his refusal to comply with the mask rules for unvaccinated players.
Johnson said that he’s “disappointed” by the play on words, and by Rodgers’s “selfish actions.” Long focused on the public health risks that Rodgers created, along with jeopardizing the team’s chance to secure the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoff field.
The irony in all of this is that Rodgers is experiencing the thing he desperately tried to avoid by hiding his vaccination status, and he’s getting it far worse than if he’d simply acknowledged that he isn’t vaccinated when he was asked that question. He would have taken some heat (he ridiculously invokes the terms “woke mob” and “cancel culture” whenever he’s potentially criticized for anything including the nonexistent blowback for his actions during the Bears game last month), but he wouldn’t have experienced the widespread and intense criticism he’s now absorbing.
And the criticism isn’t just coming from people in the media whom he can shrug off as trolls or hot-take artists. Today, Rodgers took it from four of the NFL’s immortals, whose busts are already in the place where Rodgers’s likeness eventually will take up residence.
Rodgers probably will ask that his bust be placed at the other end of the room.