New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers has a new nickname for Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, and no, it doesn’t have anything to do with Taylor Swift.
During his weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show,” Rodgers was discussing the Jets’ loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday — where Swift was in attendance for the second week in a row to see a Chiefs victory — when he referred to Kelce as “Mr. Pfizer.”
Kelce recently partnered with the pharmaceutical giant to promote its COVID-19 and flu vaccines in commercials, which have been seen by Rodgers and many others.
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“There’s some sort of moral victory out there that we hung with the champs and that our defense played well,” Rodgers told McAfee about the Jets' performance. “[Kansas City Chiefs quarterback] Pat [Mahomes] didn’t have a crazy game, and ‘Mr. Pfizer,’ we shut him down. He didn’t have a crazy impact game. Obviously he had some yards and stuff, but I felt like for the most part, we played really tough on defense, and played well the last three quarters.”
McAfee and former Green Bay Packers linebacker A.J. Hawk, one of the show’s co-hosts and an ex-teammate of Rodgers, laughed as the four-time MVP tried to keep a straight face while finishing his thoughts on the game.
McAfee asked Rodgers about the nickname for Kelce again, to which Rodgers said, “He’s doing commercials for Pfizer, so I’m sure he’s owning it.”
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Rodgers, who was back on the Jets’ sideline during the game for the first time since he ruptured his Achilles in Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills, was seen talking to Kelce, who was going through his pre-game routine on the MetLife Stadium turf.
Kelce was the obvious talking point leading into the game because of his now-well-publicized relationship with Swift. But what was said in their conversation will be kept private, at least for Rodgers.
“I think some things need to be left on the field,” he said. “I think it’s a better story when it’s left up to the imagination. I saw some different things and speculation on what we were talking about. But I’ve known him for a long time, so it was a quick chat.”
Rodgers added, “I got to see him, see [Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver] Marquez [Valdes-Scantling], who I love. Got to have a quick chat with Pat about how every time we’re supposed to play each other, one year he got hurt, one year I had ‘COVID toe,’ and obviously this year.”
The COVID reference refers to the fractured toe Rodgers suffered during the 2021 campaign, where rumors initially swirled that the ailment that was keeping him sidelined was a side effect of having COVID-19 called “COVID toe.”
Rodgers ended up debunking that during a press conference, where he showed reporters what his battered toe actually looked like. He also was quarantined for 10 days earlier after testing positive on Nov. 3, 2021, which led to the speculation.
Rodgers and McAfee joked on the show in 2021 about having “COVID toe,” and it’s clearly something the two won’t forget.
Rodgers has been a prominent anti-vaccine figure in sports, which all started when a stir was caused by his “immunized” comment after testing positive for coronavirus in the middle of the 2021 season. He later admitted he wasn’t vaccinated, and he had a strong defense against getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
“There’s heroes and villains in sports and entertainment, and I think, because of my stance on COVID and maybe some other things, I’ve been cast as the villain,” Rodgers said on McAfee’s show earlier this year. “Especially the last few years.
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He added, “This woke culture wants to be offended by everything. You just go online and find something you don't agree with. ‘I’m offended! How can you possibly say that?' I don't really care. I don't care who it's coming from or who said it.”