Aaron Rodgers Credit: New York Jets

After a mediocre 2022 season in Green Bay and a ruptured Achilles’ tendon in 2023, Aaron Rodgers has made more headlines for his viral interviews in recent years than his play on an NFL field.

Speaking at New York Jets organized team activities this week, Rodgers denied the idea that his public comments or political pursuits could be a distraction for his teammates and coaches in New York.

“I appreciate anybody’s opinions, that’s the beauty in the first amendment in this country and free speech,” Rodgers said, “whether it’s positive to me or it’s negative.”

Rodgers believes most people now view him as sensitive or someone who’s victimizing himself. But regardless of the attention he generated in appearances on The Joe Rogan Experience, Tucker Carlson’s X show, something called icanflypod, or the “uncensored,” “red-pilled” interview he did on Look Into It with Eddie Bravo, Rodgers insists he will leave all of that in the offseason once it’s time to buckle down for football season.

Rodgers also again confirmed he was a candidate to be vice president on Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s ticket this fall, but did not want to retire to enter politics.

“Those are offseason things, and those were real opportunities,” Rodgers said. “Once the season starts, it’s all about football.”

However, Rodgers made appearances on The Pat McAfee Show during each of the past several NFL seasons, where he did not stick to sports. Former Packers’ teammates have come out with stories of Rodgers talking up conspiracy theories (a term he despises) around team facilities.

As Rodgers enters his 40s and stares down the eventual end of his playing career, it’s natural he would drift outside the painted lines a bit. While his beliefs may not always be based in fact and may turn some folks off, he’s within his right to do and say whatever he wants.

Still, his Football Guy mentality toward getting rid of distractions and focusing on winning is hard to maintain as he expands his profile beyond sports and espouses fringe beliefs in public forums.

[New York Jets]

About Brendon Kleen

Brendon is a Media Commentary staff writer at Awful Announcing. He has also covered basketball and sports business at Front Office Sports, SB Nation, Uproxx and more.