John Tomase

Opinion: It turns out Aaron Rodgers might be even worse than we thought

"Toxic" doesn't begin to describe some of the Jets QB's views.

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No matter who starts at quarterback for the Patriots next year, at least we have this: Rooting for him won't make you feel like the worst person in the world.

Aaron Rodgers fans can't relate.

We already suspected Rodgers might not be the best teammate. His diva behavior, constant need for attention, and insistence on strafing us with his political views have turned him from the relatable Discount Double Check guy into someone who'd make you cross the street.

His trite anti-woke, anti-vax, do-your-own-research rantings were annoyingly harmless when confined to the bro spaces of the media ecosystem like Pat McAfee, Joe Rogan, or even the haughty Bill Maher.

But now that Rodgers is reportedly under consideration to join the top of Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s independent presidential ticket, we're learning more about his real views. And toxic doesn't even begin to describe them.

Forget about the vaccine stuff and his embarrassing desire to debate Covid czar Dr. Anthony Fauci or "Mr. Pfizer" Travis Kelce. Put aside his baseless insinuation that ABC late-night host Jimmy Kimmel was somehow connected to disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein. Focus instead on his more insidious claims.

Whether it's former backup DeShone Kizer telling The Breneman Show podcast that the first question Rodgers ever asked him was, "Do you believe in 9/11?" or even worse, CNN reporting that Rodgers told two different people – including one of its reporters a decade ago – that the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre was a government hoax featuring actors, Rodgers's embrace of conspiracy theories opens a window into his thinking that would be better slammed shut.

(Editor's Note: Rodgers pushed back against CNN's report Thursday in a post on X, writing in part, "As I’m on the record saying in the past, what happened in Sandy Hook was an absolute tragedy. I am not and have never been of the opinion that the events did not take place.")

If Aaron Rodgers, citizen, wants to swim in the fever swamps, we'd merely encourage him to wear a floatie. If Aaron Rodgers, NFL quarterback, feels compelled to share his insights, that's more problematic because of his platform; still, with minimal effort he can be ignored.

But Aaron Rodgers, candidate for Vice President? Even if his ticket has no chance of winning, anyone considering a third-party vote has a right to know what they're endorsing. The fact that Rodgers allegedly made these disclosures in private simply makes them more telling.

It goes without saying that 9/11 and Sandy Hook actually happened. That the survivors of either tragedy would be retraumatized by a smug bruh with delusions of intellect is enraging even by our current political standards.

The New York Times reported on Tuesday (as confirmed by NBC News) that RFK Jr. likely will name either Rodgers or former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura as his running mate by March 26 in order to make ballot deadlines in a number of states. Whether the latest revelations harm Rodgers's candidacy is an open question – Kennedy is a notorious conspiratorialist himself – but there's little doubt they're an escalation from parsing vaccinated vs. immunized.

From the erudite wannabe Jeopardy host to ... this, Rodgers is in danger of descending the Curt Schilling rabbit hole to oblivion. Like the Big Schill, Rodgers owns a healthy persecution complex that causes him to double down or deflect when an apology, or better yet, total silence, is what's appropriate.

Of course, someone inclined to doubt the reality of Sandy Hook probably isn't hard-wired to express contrition. If Rodgers ever addresses any of this, past behavior suggests he'll invoke the canceling powers of the alphabet mafia and maybe claim he was "just asking questions," although good luck squirming out of that one on a (shudder) debate stage.

So have fun rooting for this guy, Jets fans. He'll surely be buried in his playbook while making campaign stops in Tucson, Savannah, and Battle Creek.

In the meantime, the anti-Aaron Rodgers is reportedly considering a run for president himself someday. Steph Curry is likeable, charitable, and genuinely decent. Now that's a candidacy America can get behind.

Curry/Ionescu 2036! Who's with me?!

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