Rodgers out with Covid-19, will miss NFL Chiefs showdown

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·3 min read
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers will miss Sunday's game at Kansas City after testing positive for Covid-19, according to multiple reports Wednesday (AFP/Christian Petersen)
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Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has tested positive for Covid-19 after going unvaccinated and will miss Sunday's NFL showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs, according to multiple reports Wednesday.

NFL Network and ESPN reported that Rodgers will be sidelined for what would have been his first NFL matchup against Chiefs star quarterback Patrick Mahomes in the contest at Kansas City.

Packers coach Matt LaFleur would only confirm that Rodgers had been placed on the Covid-19 injured list and would not play Sunday.

"All I can say is he's in the Covid-19 protocols," LaFleur said. "We're not allowed to say who tests positive or whatnot."

Asked about the vaccination status of Rodgers, LaFleur said, "I'm not going to get into any of our coaches' or players' vaccination status."

Rodgers, last year's NFL Most Valuable Player, said in August he had been "immunized" and left the impression he had been vaccinated.

But both NFL Network and ESPN reported the 37-year-old signal caller has not been vaccinated against Covid-19.

Asked if the word "immunized" by Rodgers was misleading, LaFleur said, "That's a great question for Aaron. I'm not going to comment on it."

ESPN reported Rodgers had an "alternate treatment" for Covid-19 and asked the NFL to be considered vaccinated but the league declined.

According to NFL Covid-19 protocol Rodgers must spend at least 10 days away from the team, thus missing the Chiefs game and cannot rejoin the Packers until November 13, the eve of Green Bay's game against Seattle, making him questionable for that contest.

"We'll address next week when we get there," LaFleur said.

Rodgers would be out longer if he does not remain aysmptomatic.

This season, Rodgers has completed 67 percent of his passes for 1,894 yards and 17 touchdowns with only three interceptions.

Rodgers reportedly has been following NFL protocol rules for unvaccinated players all season, including daily tests and masking while in close contact with players and coaches inside the Packers team facilities.

Rodgers has not worn masks during media interview sessions at team facilities. USA Today reported there was a video of an unmasked Rodgers with teammates at a Halloween party on social media.

Violating NFL Covid-19 protocols could bring a four-game suspension.

- Love gets a chance -

Jordan Love, selected by the Packers in the first round of last year's NFL Draft, is set to make his first league start against the Chiefs in place of Rodgers. Love has completed 5-of-7 passes this season for 68 yards.

"Hey, it's a great challenge," said LaFleur. "Nobody is going to feel sorry for us. We all have to prepare to the best of our ability to go down there and get a win."

The Packers, on a six-game win streak, share the NFL's best record at 7-1 with the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams.

Also missing for Green Bay against the Chiefs (4-4) will be practice squad quarterback Kurt Benkert, who also tested positive for Covid-19 earlier this week.

LaFleur said he would need to sign another quarterback as a backup.

Asked if he was concerned about Love's Covid-19 status in the wake of two other signal callers contracting the virus, LaFleur said, "We're all concerned, everybody in this building. It's something we have to deal with."

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