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By Mark Metzler

 

With the possible exception of Don Hutson, Aaron Rodgers is the best to ever play for the Packers. And with the possible exception of Brett Favre, he is the most arrogant and narcissistic. 

Because he is so good, Rodgers has been largely forgiven by the fan base for really self-centered behavior, as he exhibited in his holdout this year. It was a mess, and it was about Rodgers. He was in the spotlight all the time. But the fans are no longer willing to forgive his behavior. Many Packers fans turned on him this past week because of what he did. He lied about being vaccinated for COVID-19. He let down his teammates and all the Packers’ fans around the world.

Sure, it’s disappointing he tested positive for COVID-19. But people do that every week. It’s forgivable. Davante Adams and Allen Lazard were COVID ineligible just last week. Players on other teams aren’t vaccinated, but at least they own up to it. Kirk Cousin puts his Vikings teammates and fans at risk every week. It’s irresponsible (because it puts his team’s success in jeopardy), but at least he owns it. That Rodgers said that he was “immunized” and knew it to be a lie is inexcusable. The parsing of language – “immunized” instead of “vaccinated” – is incredibly arrogant. He may not think we are as smart as him, but we are smart enough to know right from wrong.

I’ve been reading a good deal about this situation, and one writer pointed out that Rodgers is a hypocrite, too. In 2013, Rodgers ended a restaurant partnership with Milwaukee Brewers’ slugger Ryan Braun, and Braun tested positive for performance enhancing drugs. That was after Braun denied using PEDs. At the time, Rodgers pulled out of the partnership and said he didn’t like being lied to.

We don’t either.

When caught in his lie, he does what other arrogant narcissists do (think of other athletes and politicians, for example): Rodgers attacks people for not understanding, attacks people for not understanding how smart he is, attacks people for leaking his vaccination status.

Well, most people don’t believe he’s allergic to something in the vaccines. It is what one sweet older woman and ardent Packer fan described to me as “bull crap.”

So, what should his consequence be? I have to agree with my friend Lee’s sentiment, who said, “They should fire him.” That’s what would have happened to any of us if we had let down the people who depended on us because we lied. I really don’t care how good of a football player he has been, he is currently, or he will be in the future (though it would be good to get draft picks). Decent people don’t do what he did to millions of fans. If they have integrity, they don’t do it a single person.

I am to the point where I was with Favre, when he kept retiring and coming back. Then, I couldn’t wait for Rodgers to take his place. Now, I can’t wait for Rodgers to leave. With Rodgers, this Packers team is good enough to win the Super Bowl. But at what cost?

I hate that the game against the Chiefs was an afterthought to this drama. It should have been one of the highlights of the entire NFL season. Make no mistake, with Rodgers the Packers win. With a few breaks and better special teams play, the Packers win with Jordan Love. Love did OK. With experience, he will do better. How much? I don’t know. The defense played great, really as well as they have in a long time. But, the game goes down as a 13-7 loss, and the Packers fall to 7-2.

Next week, it’s the Seattle Seahawks, and, no doubt, more drama.