Jets QB Aaron Rodgers insists focus has been football, not politics

jets qb aaron rodgers insists focus has been football, not politics

New York Jets QB Aaron Rodgers

New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers suggested earlier this month that he seriously considered serving as a running mate for independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

As shared by Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, though, Rodgers was singing something of a different tune while speaking with SiriusXM Mad Dog Sports Radio host Adam Schein on Thursday.

"I think I was just trying to clear that story up," Rodgers said about his previous comments. "It was never like playing quarterback and also campaigning at the same time. There was only two options. One of the two options was to not play and go down the route of thinking about being the VP. Now, obviously, I was on the shortlist for him. The other option was the option that since Sept. 12th was the only one in my mind, that I was playing football."

The Jets confirmed on Sept. 12 that Rodgers suffered a torn Achilles in the 2023 regular-season opener. That setback cost him the remainder of the campaign.

Shortly after news broke this offseason that Kennedy had approached Rodgers about the VP role, Jets owner Woody Johnson insisted the future Hall of Famer was "getting back to football 100 percent" coming off his injury. Rodgers later raised eyebrows when he told well-known media personality Tucker Carlson that he had "definitely thought about" Kennedy's offer.

More recently, Rodgers said during a news conference this week that his options were to "retire and be [Kennedy's] VP or keep playing, and I want to keep playing."

Rodgers expanded on those thoughts during his chat with Schein.

"I had to listen to Bobby because I respect him and I appreciate his friendship," Rodgers explained. "But the entire time, since September 12th, my focus has been playing. . . . In the end, I was always playing."

The pay cut Rodgers accepted last summer allowed the Jets to build around him through this offseason and he has since said he could continue playing for another "two, three or four more years." Whatever did or didn't happen behind the scenes between Rodgers and Kennedy, the 40-year-old quarterback seemingly wants it known ahead of organized team activities that he never came close to retiring and/or walking away from the Jets.

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