GREEN BAY, Wis. – Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers used the word “cancel” six times during his lengthy appearance on The Pat McAfee Show on Friday.
On Saturday, Prevea Health announced it had ended a decade-long relationship with the MVP quarterback, effective immediately, in the wake of his controversial comments about COVID-19 vaccines.
This wasn’t an example of cancel culture, though. Rather, it’s an example of two sides with wildly different thoughts on the importance of the COVID-19 vaccine parting ways.
“Prevea Health remains deeply committed to protecting its patients, staff, providers and communities amidst the COVID-19 pandemic,” Prevea said in a statement. “This includes encouraging and helping all eligible populations to become vaccinated against COVID-19 to prevent the virus from further significantly impacting lives and livelihoods.”
Rodgers made it clear he’s not an anti-vaxxer. If you’re scared of getting COVID or have underlying medical issues, then get vaccinated, he said. However, Rodgers explained he is a healthy person with a strong immune system. Also, “the next great chapter in my life” is being a father, and he was concerned that he found “zero long-term studies around sterility or fertility issues around the vaccines” during his research.
Rodgers had worked with Prevea since 2012. All mentions of Rodgers have been scrubbed from Prevea.com.
In December, during the heat of the pandemic locally, Rodgers joined a Prevea Zoom featuring hundreds of doctors and nurses.
“It was pretty cool,” Prevea Health CEO and President Dr. Ashok Rai told The Green Bay Press-Gazette at the time. “Our teams have worked really hard to get the community to this point and some days are good and some days are really emotional, and it’s just nice to have a surprise like that.”
Rodgers thanked them for their efforts on the front lines of the pandemic.
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“People were happy today, and I haven’t been able to say that very much lately, but people were happy today,” Rai said. “I could never say thank you enough to Aaron for that.”
On Dec. 10, 2019, Rodgers signed a contract extension with Prevea to continue their relationship into 2013.
“This relationship goes far beyond the idea of a celebrity serving as a spokesperson,” Rai said at the time. “As one of the most respected athletes in the country, Aaron is truly passionate about improving the health and wellness of our communities. His commitment to our message and his ability to add his own personal twist comes from his own passion of improving the health and wellness of Wisconsin. We are proud to call him a member of the Prevea family.”
No doubt Rodgers saw Prevea’s decision coming given the differing opinions on a critical topic.
According to Rodgers, he has an allergy to one of the ingredients used in the mRNA vaccines – Pfizer and Moderna. The CDC says those people should not take those vaccines. That left the Johnson & Johnson shot. During a 10-day span in mid-April, that shot was paused after clotting issues developed in six people.
So, Rodgers began to research alternatives, and zeroed in on a “long-term protocol that involved multiple months.” He petitioned the league for that regimen to serve as his vaccination.
The league declined that request and considered Rodgers unvaccinated.
“What about making the best decision for my own circumstance?” he said. “And again, that health is not a one-size-fits-all thing. I think that's the thing that's most disappointing. Looked at our squad. I'm the second non-vaxxed player to test positive. It's pretty evident I tested positive being around a vaccinated individual. That's the majority of people I spend time with. There's been dozens of individuals that work at the facility that are vaxxed that have tested positive, so this idea that it's a pandemic of the unvaccinated is just a total lie.
“I go back to these two questions for this woke mob. No. 1, if the vaccine is so great, then how come people are still getting COVID and getting COVID and unfortunately dying from COVID. (And) if the vaccine is so safe, then how come the manufacturers of the vaccine have full immunity?”
On Wednesday, Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19, meaning he will be out for at least Sunday’s game at the Kansas City Chiefs. On Friday, he said he’s feeling good, thanks in part to a regimen of monoclonal antibodies, Ivermectin and a combination of vitamins and minerals.