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#pounditWednesday, October 5, 2022

Aaron Rodgers

Reporter not voting Aaron Rodgers NFL MVP because of off-field reasons

Aaron Rodgers after a play

Veteran NFL reporter Hub Arkush took heat on Tuesday after revealing he was not giving Aaron Rodgers an MVP vote because of off-field issues.

Arkush was a guest on the “Parkins & Spiegel Show” with Danny Parkins and Matt Spiegel on 670 The Hub in Chicago on Tuesday. Arkush, the editor of Pro Football Weekly, said on-field performance aside, Rodgers shouldn’t be MVP because he is a “jerk.”

“I don’t think you can be the biggest jerk in the league and punish your team and your organization and your fanbase the way he did and be the MVP,” Arkush argued. “Has he been the most valuable on the field? Yeah, you can make that argument. But I don’t think he’s been clearly that much more valuable than Jonathan Taylor or Cooper Kupp or maybe even Tom Brady. And from where I sit, the rest of it is why he’s not going to be my choice.”

Arkush also told the hosts that he has talked with some other Associated Press NFL MVP voters who view things similarly to him, which presumably means they will hold off-field issues against Rodgers.

As for what the AP is told are the guidelines for MVP voting, “we are told to pick the guy who we think is the most valuable to his team,” Arkush said.

Arkush is displaying a clear anti-Rodgers bias and holding off-field matters against the quarterback.

It’s undeniable that Rodgers caused controversies regarding offseason trade rumors, and about his vaccination status. However, it’s clear that the quarterback’s behavior did not negatively impact his team during the regular season. Rodgers is having another big season, and his Packers have the best record in the league.

You can absolutely argue that other players, like Taylor or Kupp or Brady, have been more valuable to their teams this season than Rodgers. But the reason should be due to on-field matters, not off-field issues. Green Bay’s success is direct proof that what Rodgers has done off the field hasn’t hurt the team.

Others on Twitter took issue with Arkush showing his bias and not evaluating MVP solely based on on-field performance.

There are 50 votes that go towards AP NFL MVP. If Rodgers wins, we know it won’t be unanimously.

Photo: Oct 28, 2021; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) reacts against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Rodgers shares how he became friends with Pat McAfee

Pat McAfee talking on his show

Aaron Rodgers and Pat McAfee have a close friendship, and many assume it began when MacAfee was playing in the NFL as a punter for the Indianapolis Colts. However, the Green Bay Packers star says it was actually golf that brought him and his good buddy together.

Rodgers was a guest on the “ManningCast” during Monday night’s game between the Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers. He was asked to share the story of how him and McAfee met, and he said it was when former Packers star AJ Hawk — now a co-host on “The Pat McAfee Show” — suggested McAfee as a fill-in after Rodgers and Hawk had someone bail on them for a golf tournament. The rest is history.

Rodgers said he had never met McAfee prior to the tournament. McAfee was doing standup comedy at the time, and Rodgers asked if he would do a brief set when Rodgers introduced him at the golf event. You can hear the rest of the story below:

“I had never met him,” Rodgers recalled. “I introduced myself and said, ‘Hey, when I introduce you tonight at the welcome dinner do you mind doing a couple minutes of standup?’ He goes, ‘No, I’m not doing that.’ … So I’m introducing my team and I say former punter and All-Pro Pat McAfee is here. Pat walks up on stage, takes the mic out of my hand and does 10 minutes of standup. I knew from that point forward he was going to be a great friend.”

That story aligns perfectly with McAfee’s personality. He’s sarcastic and hilarious, which is why his show has become so popular. Rodgers has also helped it grow by making regular appearances and speaking freely about a variety of topics.

McAfee recently inked a massive deal with FanDuel, and Rodgers definitely played an indirect role in helping him secure it. The fact that the two have a genuine friendship is part of what makes Rodgers’ appearances on McAfee’s show so entertaining.

Aaron Rodgers hoping for 1 change when Packers host playoff game

Aaron Rodgers on the sideline

The Green Bay Packers clinched the top seed in the NFC with their win over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday night. That means they will have home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, and Aaron Rodgers is hoping for better weather this year than the Packers had a year ago. Of course, his definition of better would be worse for the average person.

The temperature at Lambeau Field was 10 degrees at kickoff on Monday night. Not surprisingly, it didn’t seem to bother Rodgers. The reigning MVP went 29/38 for 288 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions while leading the Packers to a 37-10 win. After the game, Rodgers said he is crossing his fingers for icy temperatures during the postseason.

Green Bay hosted two playoff games last year. Temperatures were in the 30s when they defeated the Los Angeles Rams in the Divisional Round and the upper-20s when they lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC Championship Game. You can understand why Rodgers wanted colder weather, especially since the Packers hosted two warm-weather teams.

Rodgers is on track to win the MVP Award again this year. Some believe he wants to win another Super Bowl before leaving Green Bay to play for another team, but there is some reason to doubt that now.

Photo: Jan 19, 2020; Santa Clara, California, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) reacts following the loss against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship Game at Levi’s Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Ex-Packer says he has no relationship with Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers after a play

Aaron Rodgers and Greg Jennings put up some great numbers together when the two were teammates in Green Bay, but they have not exactly kept in touch. That is hardly a coincidence, as Jennings reminded everyone recently.

Jennings was asked by Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press this week about Rodgers breaking Favre’s Packers team record of 442 touchdown passes. The former wide receiver praised Rodgers for the long journey he took to get to this point. However, Jennings also confirmed that the relationship between him and Rodgers remains strained. He described it as “non-existent.”

“We don’t text, we don’t communicate like that,” Jennings said. “We haven’t had an official sit down, like bring it all in for a hug, since I left Green Bay. … We had a great relationship (in Green Bay) … Our relationship now has been non-existent. I tried to reach out to refurbish it but haven’t had any success. The acceptance from his side has just not been there.”

Jennings left the Packers in 2013 and signed with the division rival Minnesota Vikings. He was critical of Rodgers at the time for not being a team player and for not supporting him. Jennings said he has tried to apologize, but Rodgers has not been receptive.

“My kids would love to meet him and be able to say, ‘Hey, you played with my dad,’” Jennings said. “Their favorite team is the Packers, so he’s talked about well often in my house. … But all things heal in time.”

Rodgers is known to hold a grudge. Jennings said some unflattering things about him several years ago, and the reigning MVP clearly has not let it go. That is hardly a surprise to anyone who is familiar with Rodgers’ family drama.

Perhaps Rodgers and Jennings will bury the hatchet someday. The Packers quarterback probably isn’t giving it much thought at the moment.

H/T The Spun

Photo: Oct 28, 2021; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) reacts against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Rodgers makes interesting comments about his NFL future

Aaron Rodgers after a play

Aaron Rodgers has once again played some of the best football of his career this season, and he looks like he could play as long as Tom Brady if he wanted to. Despite that, the Green Bay Packers star insists he has not made any decisions about his playing future beyond this year.

Rodgers told reporters on Wednesday that he has not ruled out retiring after the season.

“I wouldn’t rule that. I’m just enjoying this season for this season. Playing next year will definitely be in the thought process. … If this year has taught me anything it’s that I still can play,” Rodgers said. “I still have a love for the game. I’m still super-competitive and still enjoy the process of the week.

“There will be a lot of things I’ll weigh in the offseason.”

What was more interesting is that Rodgers voluntarily brought up that he is not “thinking about (playing) elsewhere.” He indicated that the relationship between him and Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst has improved.

“The things that I’ve said about the team this year and about Brian’s and I’s relationship have been heartfelt and genuine. I do appreciate a lot of the things that I’ve seen from the team that are directly related to conversations we had in the offseason,” Rodgers said. “That was meaningful to me. I’ve enjoyed being a part of conversations that directly affect my job, which I talked about in the offseason. Brian’s taken the lead in that, and I do appreciate the way our relationship has grown.”

Rodgers also spoke glowingly about Packers head coach Matt LaFleur. You can hear his full comments below:

It was not all that long ago that Rodgers seemed like he had made up his mind about wanting to leave Green Bay. The Packers restructured his contract in a way that would allow him to make the 2021 season his last with them. There was also a report that they would work with him to let him choose his next team.

Now that the Packers are 12-3 and the best team in football, it sounds like all is well. Rodgers likely realizes that his best chance of winning another Super Bowl is to stay in Green Bay.

Photo: Oct 28, 2021; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) reacts against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Erin Andrews, Aaron Rodgers interview shows absurdity of TV theater

Aaron Rodgers is interviewed by Erin Andrews

Aaron Rodgers has openly criticized the hypocrisy of the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols. After the Green Bay Packers’ win on Christmas Day, the reigning MVP showed viewers the flaws with some of those rules and regulations.

Rodgers was interviewed by Erin Andrews of FOX Sports following Green Bay’s 24-22 win over the Cleveland Browns on Saturday. The two remained socially distanced while chatting, as most athletes and reporters have done for the past year-plus. But when they interview ended, both immediately went in for the hug.

Rodgers has been fined for violating COVID protocols. He also apologized for misleading some people about his vaccination status. Some will criticize him for disregarding the protocols again, but the hug was clearly mutual. You can see the exchange at around the 2:45 mark of the video below:

Regardless of your views on COVID-19, the sequence between Rodgers and Andrews showed how carried away people have gotten with the theatrics. There’s no point to a socially distanced interview that ends in a hug, but Rodgers and Andrews certainly are not the only two to do it.

Aaron Rodgers has ultimate compliment for Davante Adams

Davante Adams

Davante Adams is having another outstanding season with the Green Bay Packers. He was recently named a Pro Bowler for the fifth consecutive year, but he received an even greater honor from Aaron Rodgers following Saturday’s game.

After Adams caught 10 passes for 114 yards and two touchdowns in a win over the Cleveland Browns, Rodgers once again heaped praise on his longtime teammate. The quarterback said Adams is the best player he has ever played with, which is quite the compliment.

As Matt Schneidman of The Athletic noted, Rodgers has said for quite some time that Hall of Famer Charles Woodson is the best player he has ever played with. The fact that the reigning MVP is now giving Adams the title is significant.

Adams, who just turned 29, is on a Hall of Fame trajectory himself. He has now eclipsed more than 1,300 yards receiving in three of the past four seasons. He fell just short with 997 yards in 2019, and he missed four games that season. Adams also has an eye-popping 68 total touchdown catches since 2016.

One defensive coordinator recently devised an entire game plan to stop Adams, and the Packers star still found the end zone. If he remains healthy and Rodgers stays in Green Bay, Adams will almost certainly continue to post video game numbers.

Photo: Samantha Madar/USA TODAY Network-Wisconsin via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Aaron Rodgers’ toe injury in worse shape after being stepped on

Aaron Rodgers after a play

Aaron Rodgers had a big game on Saturday night, but there was one downside.

Rodgers threw for three touchdown passes in his Green Bay Packers’ 24-22 win over the Cleveland Browns. He looked good on the field, but he says his toe injury had a setback.

Rodgers told FOX’s Erin Andrews after the game that his toe was stepped on which undid all the progress he had recently made in his recovery.

“This was the first week that the toe felt really good,” Rodgers said. “So I was disappointed to get stepped on. It just kind of sent it right back to where I was a few weeks ago. But that’s the way it goes. It wasn’t on purpose. Frustrating, but we got the win.”

Royce Newman accidentally stepped on Rodgers’ toe during the game.

Rodgers had a good attitude about getting hurt, but he probably wishes he could have avoided the injury. Still, Packers fans should not be too concerned; Rodgers has played well even when injured.

Photo: Oct 28, 2021; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) reacts against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Rodgers’ record 443rd touchdown ball contained an error

Aaron Rodgers' ball had a mistake

The special ball Aaron Rodgers used to throw his Green Bay Packers record 443rd touchdown pass contained an error.

Rodgers threw three touchdown passes in his Packers’ 24-22 win over the Cleveland Browns on Saturday. His first touchdown pass of the game helped him break Brett Favre’s record for most touchdown passes by a Packers quarterback.

The NFL had a special sticker on the balls to note the record. However, the sticker said 433 instead of 443.

That’s nothing a new sticker can’t fix. Or maybe it’s best to keep the ball with the error given how those can become collectible items too.

If you’re wondering what happened with the ball, the FOX announcing team shared that Rodgers did something very cool with it.

Aaron Rodgers sending record ball to Brett Favre’s grandson Parker

Brett Favre with Aaron Rodgers and Parker

Aaron Rodgers is doing something very cool with his record ball.

Rodgers threw three touchdown passes in the first half of the Green Bay Packers’ win over the Cleveland Browns on Saturday. The first of the three TD passes gave Rodgers 443 in his career. That surpassed Brett Favre’s record of 442 touchdown passes with the Packers.

The pass went to Allen Lazard, who gave the ball back to Rodgers.

According to FOX’s broadcast, Rodgers is giving the record ball to Favre’s 11-year-old grandson, Parker.

“Believe it or not, this keepsake and career touchdown pass number 443 is going to Brett Favre’s grandson, Parker, if you can believe that,” Joe Buck and Troy Aikman said on FOX’s telecast.

“And if Parker’s anything like Papa, he’ll be out there throwing it in the yard next week,” Aikman added.

That’s an unbelievably cool gesture from Rodgers.

Two years ago, Favre wrote that Parker’s favorite quarterback was Rodgers.

How cool is it to get the ball from your favorite quarterback that broke your grandfather’s record? It doesn’t get better than that.