Is This How NFL Teams Feel About Aaron Rodgers' Punishment?

As if contracting COVID-19 wasn't bad enough, things have gone from bad to worse for Aaron Rodgers. On November 9, Rodgers — who'd previously stated that he was "immunized" — was said to be "upset" over the way in which his decision not to get vaccinated was being received by fans and the media. A source close to the Green Bay Packers quarterback told People, "He knew some people would disagree with him, but he didn't know that it would become the sh**storm it became."

Previously, the athlete dropped by the Pat McAfee Show to complain that he was caught "in the crosshairs of the woke mob." Rodgers also explained that he was allergic to ingredients in the Moderna and Pfizer shots, and was wary of blood clotting issues tied to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which led him to seek alternative treatments. However, the ensuing backlash had him walking back some of his statements — and once more, the Pat McAfee Show was his platform of choice. "I made some comments that people might have felt were misleading. And to anybody who felt misled by those comments, I take full responsibility," Rogers said on November 9. 

The three-time MVP is also getting fined for violating the NFL's COVID-19 protocols (including not wearing a mask during press conferences), and that reportedly isn't sitting too well with other players.

NFL teams reportedly think the situation is unfair

On November 9, ESPN reported that Green Bay Packers players Aaron Rodgers and Allen Lazard were supposedly fined $14,650 for breaking the NFL's COVID-19 regulations. As a source claimed to the outlet, the Packers franchise also got hit with a $300,000 fine for their failure to report Rodgers' and Lazard's presence at a Halloween party (to which they did not wear masks). Per NFL protocol, unvaccinated players are not permitted to gather in groups of more than three, hence the fine. Although Rodgers did not publicly react to the reported fine, there were rumblings about what some other NFL members thought.

According to ProFootballTalk, several "outraged" NFL teams supposedly believe that the fine is a mere slap on the wrist compared to previous punishments handed down. In September 2020, New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton was fined $100,000 for not wearing a face-covering at the beginning of the season. Likewise, CBS Sports reported that the Denver Broncos, Seattle Seahawks, and San Francisco 49ers franchises were fined $250,000 for failing to wear masks during Week 2 of the 2020 season. "That's bullsh**," one anonymous source told ProFootballTalk, reacting to Rodgers' punishment.

Packers President Mark Murphy struck an apologetic note in a statement on November 10. "We respect the League's findings and we recognize the importance of adherence to the COVID protocols to keep our team and organization safe and healthy," Murphy said, according to The New York Times.