Americans can be a forgiving lot, for the most part. People fall out of public favor and then climb their way back into our collective good graces after a certain period of time. It happens often.

That being said, Americans get cranky when people lie. Which brings us to Aaron Rodgers. What a roller coaster ride 2021 has been for No. 12. As of late, it seemed like all the offseason drama in Green Bay was a thing of the past. Rodgers returned to the team after rampant trade speculation, shook off an opening-week blowout loss and had the Packers rolling at 7-1 after an impressive win over the previously unbeaten Cardinals.

He even went to a Halloween party dressed as John Wick, a costume he grew his hair out for. Good times were had by all. Then, the bottom fell out.

Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19 this week, which in itself, wouldn’t be THAT big of a deal. He’s an athlete and most likely, would recover pretty fast. However, there’s a wrinkle. Aaron made it appear that he had been vaccinated a couple months ago during a media session. He used the term “immunized” when asked about it by reporters.

(You can discuss this on the BSL Board here.)

As it turns out, he’s not vaccinated. And it seems like the league was well aware of that. I don’t like calling people liars, but it’s clear that Rodgers stretched the truth. He wasn’t completely honest. He skirted around the facts.

Fine, he lied.

Rodgers is going to miss this Sunday’s game against the Chiefs and isn’t guaranteed to play in the following game. The first day he’s eligible to return as a non-vaccinated player is the day before their Week 10 matchup against the Seahawks.

We have no idea why Rodgers was deceitful about his vaccination status as he hasn’t spoken publicly since the news broke. Was it because he didn’t want to hear criticism from the media and the public about it? Maybe. Was it out of a sense of wanting to protect his privacy? That’s possible. But both potential reasons don’t make a whole lot of sense.

Several NFL players have been vocal about their anti-vaxx stance. Colts quarterback Carson Wentz, Bills receiver Cole Beasley and others spoke out about their refusal to get the shot. And it’s true that they did receive some pushback about their decisions, but guess what? After a couple days, the media got bored and moved on to something else.

I have to believe the same thing would have happened to Rodgers if he had just been up front about his status. At the risk of sounding like a parent, it’s always worse when you lie. It’s just not worth it.


  1. Packers — They’re still in the top spot, even though their hold on it is tenuous at the moment. But the good news about Aaron Rodgers being out this weekend is that the team will get a good look at Jordan Love. And Love will be going against a subpar Chiefs defense. If he balls out, things could get very juicy in Green Bay.
  1. Cowboys — They went on the road and beat a decent Vikings team with Cooper Rush at quarterback. Most people have them as the best team in the NFC and as of now, it’s hard to argue with them. They are loaded on offense and their defense is coming together fast.
  1. Rams — They just took apart a bad Texans team and then followed that up by going out and getting Von Miller from the Broncos before the trade deadline. Wow. Just imagine what it’s going to be like to see Miller (if he’s anywhere near his usual ability) along with Aaron Donald and Leonard Floyd. If everyone stays healthy, this team is going to give the rest of the league nightmares. Now they just need to clean up their sloppiness on special teams.
  1. Cardinals — It wasn’t that they lost to the Packers last week, it’s that Kyler Murray suffered an ankle injury in the process. He hasn’t practiced yet and it doesn’t look like he will before Sunday. And while head coach Kliff Kingsbury said he could play without practicing, that might not be the smartest decision. It’s a long season. Why take a chance?
  1. Bills — If the regular season ended today, Buffalo would be the No. 4 seed. However, they have the best point differential in the league and probably the easiest path to the postseason. There’s a good chance they will be the AFC’s top seed heading into the postseason.
  1. Titans — We can’t have nice things, can we? Derrick Henry was running roughshod over the league before all smiles were erased when he went down with a foot injury on Sunday. Sure, Tennessee did beat Indianapolis for a key division victory, but it’s hard not to feel pessimistic going forward. Adrian Peterson has been brought in as a replacement running back, which just feels weird. Should he be playing football at this point?
  1. Buccaneers — Wow, how the mighty have fallen in these rankings. This is just a temporary thing as Tampa will rebound as injured players make their way back on the field. But they looked sluggish in that loss to the Saints. That can’t be ignored.
  1. Ravens — They’re coming off a bye week and shouldn’t have a problem getting past the Vikings at home on Sunday. Here’s hoping they can stay healthy (relatively) because they follow that up with a Thursday game at Miami.
  1. Raiders — Las Vegas has had quite a few weeks (more on that later). But they’re the No. 2 seed in the AFC and Derek Carr has stepped up his leadership over the roster. In seasons past, we’ve seen the Raiders get off to a nice start only to fade as the schedule progresses. Let’s see if they can hold strong in 2021.
  1. Saints — I don’t buy New Orleans as a legitimate Super Bowl contender, but they just beat Tom Brady’s Buccaneers. That has to count for something.


A real tragedy: Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs III is facing very serious charges as he was involved in a car accident that killed another driver this week. Ruggs was reportedly behind the wheel of his vehicle and had a blood alcohol level that was twice the legal limit. It just goes to show how decisions you make can have deadly consequences. I’m not a moralist, but to drive drunk when there are so many options to get you home safely is just unacceptable. He ruined the lives of the victim’s friends and family and probably destroyed whatever future he had in the NFL. It’s just sad. That’s all you can say.

Making it difficult: I didn’t enjoy seeing people dump on Carson Wentz. The man is a talented quarterback who seemingly was set to put the ugly ending to his Eagles tenure behind him and be a leader for the Colts. Then he threw one of the ugliest interceptions I’ve ever seen in last Sunday’s overtime loss to the Titans. While being brought down in the end zone, he tried to throw the ball with his left hand and it floated right into a waiting defender’s hands and returned for a touchdown. I rewound and watched that play several times and I still don’t understand what Wentz was trying to accomplish there. I really want to stick up for him, but plays like that make me throw up my hands.

This is awkward: Some people had their doubts when Odell Beckham Jr. was traded to the Browns a few years back. Not yours truly. I thought OBJ was the man who would bring out the best in young quarterback Baker Mayfield and they would make sweet music together for many seasons to come. It’s safe to say that none of that happened. Beckham hasn’t made a fuss but it’s clear that he’s not really involved in Cleveland’s offense. Then Odell’s father put out a video of the many times that Mayfield didn’t throw the ball to an open Beckham. Yeesh. Family members really need to check themselves on social media. But videos aside, it’s clear that both sides need to move on and it’s just a matter of time before the Browns release the wideout.

Just for fun: What if … not saying it’s so, but what if … Odell Beckham Jr. gets released and signs with the Rams?! Wouldn’t that be amazing?! No? Is it just me? OK, that’s fair. By the way, with Beckham being owed more than $8 million in salary this season, I don’t know how L.A. would even fit him under the cap. As long as he doesn’t sign with the Buccaneers, I’ll be satisfied.


Browns at Bengals: A tasty AFC North matchup that would be a lot tastier if Cleveland wasn’t going through roster turmoil and Cincinnati wasn’t coming off a loss to the Jets. But still, this game is definitely worth a watch.

Raiders at Giants: I’m more interested in seeing how Las Vegas responds in this game. They’ve been through a lot as an organization.

Patriots at Panthers: These are two 4-4 teams. But I’m impressed with how New England is coming together. The Patriots are strong defensively and quarterback Mac Jones has been surprisingly reliable.

Packers at Chiefs: Should have been a matchup of two future Hall of Fame quarterbacks, but that was taken from us. But Jordan Love makes this game interesting.

Cardinals at 49ers: Arizona isn’t just dealing with Kyler Murray’s injury, but star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins is hobbled, too. A win here would put the 49ers back to .500 and very much keep them in the playoff hunt.

Titans at Rams: Speaking of things being taken from us, this game would be way more exciting with Derrick Henry in the starting lineup. But for a Sunday night matchup, this one is still pretty interesting.

Bears at Steelers: It’s Monday night, you have to watch.

Sid Saraf
Sid Saraf

NFL Analyst

Currently a Mobile Editor at Yahoo, Saraf spent 5.5 years (Oct. 2010 – Feb. 2016) working for FOX Sports as an NFL Editor and Writer. Prior to that, Saraf worked for CBS Interactive for 4.5 years (May 2006 – Oct. 2010) as a Staff Editor.