NFL Fines Green Bay Packers, QB Aaron Rodgers
The NFL has issued fines to the Green Bay Packers, quarterback Aaron Rodgers and receiver Allen Lazard after its review found the team and its two players did not follow league Covid-19 protocols, NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said today.
The NFL said it concluded its investigation Tuesday evening and notified the Packers of its $300,000 penalty. Rodgers was fined $14,650 for attending a party while unvaccinated. Last month, a video circulated showing Rodgers with teammates at a Halloween party without a mask; a violation of protocols prohibiting unvaccinated players from gathering outside of team facilities in a group of more than three players.
The NFL said that the team was aware of the party after the fact and is being fined for failure to report the violations to the NFL and failure to discipline Rodgers and Lazard.
Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy said: "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. We will continue to educate the team regarding the importance of the protocols and remain committed to operating within the protocols."
The league noted the Packers were fully cooperative with the NFL's investigation, which revealed other occasions in which the Packers failed to strictly enforce the NFL-NFLPA Covid-19 protocols.
The Packers were informed by the NFL subsequent violations could result in further discipline, including possible change of draft position or loss of draft choices. The players were also warned additional violations could result in future discipline.
Rodgers was previously criticized last week when it was announced he is not vaccinated and tested positive for Covid despite telling reporters last August he’s “immunized.”
“I made some comments that people might have felt were misleading,” Rodgers said . “To anybody that felt misled by those comments, I take full responsibility for those comments.”
Said Rodgers: “I standby what I said and the reasons why I made the decision” [not to get vaccinated]. “But in the end,” he added, “I have to stay true to who I am and what I’m about. And I stand behind the things that I said.”
Last Friday, Rodgers told the show he “didn’t lie in the initial press conference” when he told media members he was immunized. He then labeled the NFL’s Covid protocols are a “witch hunt.”