Aaron Rodgers pushed back on criticism he received when the New York Jets activated him from the injured reserve and put him on the active 53-man roster despite indications he wouldn’t play this season after all.
The Jets cut fullback Nick Bawden to make room for Rodgers. But it left many scratching their heads over why Rodgers would need to have a roster spot in order to continue his rehab.
Rodgers said during his appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” Tuesday that those criticizing him should have to reveal the status of their COVID-19 vaccination.
“It’s the same old thing. It’s the same people with the same comments,” Rodgers said. “I think what we should do, Pat, is, the same people who were criticizing me or coming up with these conspiracies about my injury or whatever, before they talk, let’s go back to 2021 and let’s make people say their vax status to start.
“That’ll frame all these comments in the right window. Before they say something, let’s have them say – and ESPN is probably going to shut us off here – let’s have them say, ‘Hey, I’m so-and-so, double vaxxed with Pfizer and triple boosted, and my opinion is this guy is a bad guy because he just wanted to practice and took money away.’
“Then at least, then you’d know, and everybody would know at that point they have their puppet masters who are puppeteering them to say this certain thing about this guy, and they’re still upset about the fact that I believe in medical freedom. It’s the same tired narrative.”
Rodgers said he wanted to be put on IR and didn’t want to take a roster spot away from another player, which happened to be Bawden.
“I assumed I was going to go on IR,” he said. “I asked to be put on IR. There was a conversation, ‘Do you want to practice?’ and I said, ‘Not at the expense of somebody getting cut.’ I know how this works. I didn’t feel like I needed to practice to continue my rehab. I could do on-the-field stuff on the side.”
“But obviously I got overruled there, maybe it is what it is. That was an interesting situation. I called Nick right away, just said, ‘I hope you know this isn’t coming from me. I asked them to put me on IR.’”
Rodgers teased all season long that he was aiming to come back from the torn Achilles injury that he suffered on the first drive of the season in Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills.
He said this month he still hopes to give the Jets at least two more years.
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