ESPN reported the Packers have been fined $300,000 for violations while quarterback Aaron Rodgers and wide receiver Allen Lazard are each fined $14,650.
Last week, Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19 and was placed on the COVID-19/reserve list. He was not able to play in Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs.
In an interview Tuesday on “The Pat McAfee Show” on YouTube and SiriusXM, Rodgers defended his choice not to get vaccinated, but apologized for misleading people on his vaccination status.
“I shared an opinion that’s polarizing,” Rodgers said. “I get it. And I misled some people about my status, which I take full responsibility of, those comments. But in the end, I have to stay true to who I am and what I’m about. I stand behind the things that I said.”
When he was asked about his vaccination status in an Aug. 26 news conference, Rodgers replied by saying, “Yeah, I’m immunized.”
Rodgers had said Friday he sought alternative treatments rather than the NFL-endorsed vaccinations because he is allergic to an ingredient in the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines. He didn’t specify the ingredient.
The three-time NFL MVP said he didn’t want the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after hearing of multiple people who’d had adverse reactions to it. Rodgers also said he was worried about potential fertility issues from getting one of these three vaccines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there is no evidence COVID-19 vaccines cause fertility problems in men or women and that vaccinations are recommended for people who want to have children.
The COVID-19 vaccines authorized for use in the U.S. were tested in tens of thousands of people and proven to be both safe and effective at dramatically reducing the risk of serious disease and death. Serious side effects are extremely rare — and any risk is far lower than the risks posed by COVID-19.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.