On Wednesday, Green Bay Packers’ QB Aaron Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19, and since he is not vaccinated, Rodgers is in a 10-day minimum quarantine and will miss Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs.
So, here’s the twist. When asked in August if he was vaccinated against the virus, Rodgers said, “Yeah, I’ve been immunized.” On Friday, Rodgers appeared on The Pat McAfee Show and said that he didn’t lie about his vaccination status (hard disagree on that one), while also saying he has followed almost – key word almost – all protocols for unvaccinated NFL players. One that he has not followed is wearing a mask during press conferences, and Rodgers said he doesn’t think it’s necessary. Whether he thinks it’s necessary or not, it’s a violation of protocols.
Rodgers also said he’s allergic to an ingredient in the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines and is not comfortable with potential side effects of the J&J vaccine. Therefore, he underwent a treatment to raise his immunity, but the NFL said that did not count as vaccinated.
“I realize I’m in the crosshairs of the woke mob right now,” Rodgers said on the show. “So, before my final nail gets put in my cancel culture casket, I think I would like to set the record straight on so many of the blatant lies that are out there about myself.”
Odell Beckham Jr.
After he was “excused” from practice this week, the Cleveland Browns announced on Friday that they were working on terms under which they would release wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. Per Adam Schefter, it’s done, as the two sides have reached a settlement that will have Beckham placed on waivers on Monday. The wide receiver can be claimed on Tuesday.
“After careful consideration, internal discussions and conversations with Odell and his representation, we’ve determined that it is in the best interest of all parties involved that Odell no longer play for the Cleveland Browns,” said Browns general manager Andrew Berry in a statement.
Earlier this week, Beckham’s father posted a video on Instagram that highlighted quarterback Baker Mayfield not getting the ball to OBJ. The next day, the wide receiver was told not to come to practice and then was excused again the following day.
Per Schefter, the Browns agreed to remove the final two years of Beckham’s deal, making him a free agent after the season. The NFLPA has to approve the reworked contract.
The NBA is investigating Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver, as he has been accused of racist and misogynistic behavior and of creating a toxic work environment.
The investigation comes after ESPN published a report that alleges that during Sarver’s 17-year tenure as majority owner, he has used racially offensive language both about and in conversations with Black players, coaches and staff, while the report also alleges sexist and inappropriate behavior. ESPN conducted interviews with over 70 current and former Suns employees. Sarver denies the claims in the report.
The NBA’s investigation will be handled by the law firm, Wachtell Lipton.
Two weeks ago, Philadelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons told the team that he was not yet mentally ready to play. The team had fined Simmons $2 million for not reporting to training camp, but the team stopped the fines when he said he was not mentally prepared.
However, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Simmons was fined $360,000 for missing Thursday night’s win over the Detroit Pistons, with a plan to continue fines until he works with team doctors on his mental health and satisfies other basketball-related duties. Simmons’ money had been put into an escrow account, which the team released, but now his future salary will go back into the account.
Simmons has been working with mental health professionals through the NBAPA, but the 76ers are reportedly frustrated with the lack of basic details about these meetings and the refusal to talk to anyone the team has provided.
The 76ers and Simmons have been in four-month standoff of sorts, with Simmons requesting a trade.
NFL Injury Updates
- San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle will be activated for Sunday’s division showdown with the Arizona Cardinals. Cardinals’ QB Kyler Murray and WR DeAndre Hopkins will both be game-time decisions.
- With Saints’ QB Jameis Winston out for the season, Trevor Siemian will start for New Orleans on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, with QB Taysom Hill still playing a role. Hill is returning from a concussion.
- After being away from the team due to false positive COVID-19 tests, New York Giants’ running back Saquon Barkley and safety Xavier McKinney are back and were activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list on Friday morning. McKinney is expected to play, but Barkley will not, as he has been battling an ankle injury and did not have enough time on the practice field.