SNL cold open takes shots at Aaron Rodgers' COVID-19 vaccine interview

·3 min read

It was only a matter of 34 hours before the inevitable landed. 

"Saturday Night Live" opened its show this week by roasting Aaron Rodgers and his appearance on "The Pat McAfee Show" on Friday. Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19 earlier in the week, when it was revealed he was unvaccinated after leading reporters and fans to believe the opposite. He went on McAfee's show to explain. 

The SNL writers put Rodgers, played by Pete Davidson, at the front of the cold open as a guest with Fox News' Jeanine Pirro, played by Cecily Strong.  

 "Our first guest is an American brave enough to stand up and say, 'Screw you, science! I know Joe Rogan!" Strong as Pirro said to welcome the quarterback. 

It was tough to spoof the interview given its length and, as Yahoo Sports' Dan Wetzel writes, his decision to lean into the "Cable Talk Show-ization of our country, sinking to the level of the very critics that upset him in the first place." 

SNL spoofed Rodgers for only about 60 seconds of air time, but got in enough one-liners by Rodgers:

"It's gotten so bad that State Farm called and they're not even offering me the Rodgers rate." 

"I never lied. I took all my teammates into a huddle, got all their faces three inches away from my wet mouth, and told them, 'Trust me. I'm more of less immunized. Go team!'" 

"At the end of the day my record is still 7-1. Meaning of the eight people I've infected, seven are fine." 

Aaron Rodgers
Quarterback Aaron Rodgers faces blowback for incorrect claims about the COVID-19 vaccine on a global stage. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Rodgers embroiled in vaccine controversy

The real-life Rodgers has faced blowback for the appearance and a long list of controversial claims he made with little pushback from hosts on their validity. 

Prevea Health, a Wisconsin-based health care organization, announced Saturday it cut ties with the star quarterback. It did not reference the appearance of any specific statements Rodgers made, but noted it remains "deeply committed" to helping everyone become vaccinated to "prevent the virus from further significant impacting lives and livelihoods." The partnership began in 2012. 

State Farm, who features Rodgers in its popular commercials, has stayed mum on its relationship

The NFL pushed back on some of Rodgers' claims. Rodgers said that while he was appealing the league's ruling he must be treated like an unvaccinated player, the NFL told him it "is impossible for a vaccinated person to get COVID or spread COVID." 

The statement is incorrect; vaccines bolster's the body's immune system against disease and work hard to keep the body from contracting a virus. But they are not perfect. Vaccinated individuals can contract the disease, but studies show the rates of contracting it and becoming seriously ill are much lower than those who have not received a vaccine. 

The NFL said Friday no doctor from either the league or the players association contacted him and if they had, "they certainly would have never said anything like that.

Rodgers will miss the Packers (7-1) game agains the Chiefs (4-4) on Sunday afternoon. The Chiefs moved to 7-point favorites at BetMGM with Rodgers missing the game

He can return Nov. 13, the day before the Week 10 game, if he returns negative tests. Rodgers has to miss a minimum of 10 days under the NFL's protocols because he is unvaccinated. 

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