Over the past ten months, Packers’ quarterback (QB) Aaron Rodgers has been spiraling out of control and nobody seems to care, as long as he can still throw a football and win games.
Having been Rodgers’ most outspoken national critic, I have had harsh words for Rodgers over the course of the past ten months. However, something changed in me when I saw his most recent outburst. I am now more concerned for Rodgers than anything.
I believe Aaron Rodgers needs help. I believe that because he is becoming increasingly comfortable acting out and his behavior is inconsistent with who he has previously shown himself to be.
We need to see past the 5-1 record. We need to look into what is going on with Rodgers. Sunday’s public outburst with fans of the Chicago Bears is the second time in a month he has embarrassed himself and his team. Rodgers lashed out at the media in September saying, “It is absolute horseshit to give a platform to people who have no idea what they’re talking about.”
Rodgers has always been Rodgers, but this is different. Rodgers has always maintained a standard of professionalism towards the media and the fans that he is no longer showing.
Rodgers is not coming off like someone who has been experiencing personal growth and insight either, as he has suggested. Rodgers is acting like someone who is out of control and he is acting like someone who is devolving rapidly.
Consistently over the past ten months, Rodgers’ outward behaviors have been increasingly bolder.
Rodgers has consistently been saying things that could potentially negatively affect his team’s chances this season as well. Rodgers attempted to discourage free agents from signing in Green Bay this past off-and he very openly attempted to undermine the credibility and authority of Packers’ general manager, Brian Gutekunst.
Rodgers then held an uncommon press conference and used it as an opportunity to further air out his grievances and personal disappointments with the Packers and the team’s process.
Aaron Rodgers’s trajectory reminds me more of former NFL QB Johnny Manziel than anything else. He also lost control during an NFL game.
Character and personal conduct play a role in player evaluations. Clear and demonstrated behavior on and off the field is used to predict possible future conduct. This is why some college prospects are not drafted in the same round as their talent level would suggest. Former NFL tight end Aaron Hernandez is a classic example of this.
Hernandez would have been a top-10 pick based on talent alone. However, surrounding character issues prior to the 2010 draft caused him to slide down to the fourth round.
Wide receiver Kadarious Toney is a more recent example. Prior to the draft, there were character concerns with Toney. As a member of the New York Giants, Toney has gone on to recently punch a player on the opposing team in the head.
There is also the example of two other former players to consider, Fred Lane and Kyle Turley. Both acted out against fans with “obscene gestures,” during their playing careers. Lane was shot and killed by his wife in 2000. Bleacher Report said Turley has dealt with “suicidal and homicidal tendencies.”
The matter of concussions and CTE needs to be looked at with Rodgers. He has previously opened up about the concussions. At one point he admitted he had “lost vision.” This is not the Roman Colosseum. We do not cheer to the death in America.
I am calling for the Green Bay Packers to order a brain scan to be performed on Aaron Rodgers.
When Hernandez committed suicide, researchers concluded he had the worst form of CTE (Stage 3) ever seen in a brain under 46-years old.
Something is going on with Aaron Rodgers.
Someone needs to try to help Aaron Rodgers before it is too late.
Daniel Kelly is a former NFL scout with the New York Jets. He was hired on the regime which featured Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick, Scott Pioli, Mike Tannenbaum, and Dick Haley. He currently writes for Sports Illustrated Detroit Lions and he is a contributing evaluator for Draft Diamonds. For more information about him visit his website at whateverittakesbook.com. He can be followed on Twitter @danielkellybook and his Facebook page is WHATEVER IT TAKES NFL TALK.