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Packers' Rodgers disputes Bleacher Report feature as 'smear attack'

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Packers' Rodgers disputes Bleacher Report feature as 'smear attack'

-- Aaron Rodgers is no longer remaining silent.

The Green Bay Packers' quarterback made an appearance on ESPN Milwaukee's "Wilde and Tausch" on Monday, addressing -- and refuting -- much of last week's Bleacher Report feature that drove a stake into the heart of his relationship with former head coach Mike McCarthy.

In the story, President and CEO Mark Murphy allegedly told Rodgers "don't be the problem" in regards to the hiring of McCarthy's successor, Matt LaFleur.

"It's 100 percent, patently false," Rodgers said. The story featured a couple of Rodgers' former teammates with a reputation of saying outspoken things about their past relationship with him.

Rodgers confirmed that over 100 current and former players have reached out to him since the story was published last week.

"The thing is ... It's not a mystery, this was a smear attack by a writer trying to advance his career talking with mostly irrelevant, bitter players who all have an agenda."

Much of the drama in the story stemmed from the falling out of Rodgers and McCarthy, or, the over-exaggeration of it. The Packers finished with a 6-9-1 record last season and not only missed the playoffs for the second year in a row, but it was just the second time since 2008 they had failed to make the postseason with Rodgers starting every game.

Failing to establish themselves as a winning team paved the way to enough speculation to keep tabloids fed for a decade. After a 22-0 shutout win over the Buffalo Bills, Rodgers ripped the Packers' gameplan and execution in his post-game press conference; something he said on Monday that he regrets.

“It’s just two alpha males who are hyper-competitive and love winning and are both a little stubborn," Rodgers said. "But again, we talked through so many issues over the years, and that made us a lot stronger.

"I love Mike McCarthy. Mike has been a huge part of my success in my career and I’ve had some amazing moments on and off the field with Mike. We have had issues, no doubt about it. Any long relationship has issues, but the way that we dealt with those issues, Mike and I, was face to face. We had conversations. ... We as Packer fans and Packer people, I think we need to honor Mike and respect him the right way. We had a hell of a run."

The Packers conveniently returned to the facility on Monday for offseason workouts on the heels of Rodgers disputing many of the facts presented about him.


Zachary Jacobson is a staff writer/reporter for Cheesehead TV. He's the voice of The Leap on iTunes and can be heard on The Scoop KLGR 1490 AM every Saturday morning. He's also a contributor on the Pack-A-Day Podcast. He can be found on Twitter via @ZachAJacobson or contacted through email at [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (54) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

bbarryirish's picture

This is going to be an awesome year!
Go get 'em Aaron.
Go Pack Go!
Please give the man another weapon Gutey....

Jared's picture

Another weapon he “doesn’t trust”?

GBPDAN1's picture

Really glad Aaron cleaned this up. I feel better about the whole situation now. Good job of Rodgers coming out / going live , explaining his side, and he didn't wait long to do it.

The tone of his voice was convincing. I was down on Rodgers after some of the things I've heard throughout the years. The Bleacher report story had me very disappointed. But, now I'm moving forward and putting all of this in the past. Ya, Rodgers has a huge ego (so do a lot of players) and yes, his relationship with McCarthy wore thin, but it's understandable. Listening to Rodgers today convinced me that he (obviously) wants to clear his name and I believe this whole incident will influence Rodgers to try and work with Lafleur the best he can - to further remove this image that was being painted of him.

Looking forward to the 2019 season

Go Pack

Lare's picture

As I've said before, the Dunne story had a lot of question marks and was written to support a premise established by the author but not substantiated by the facts.

Time to move on. Dunne got his minute of fame, Finley & Jennings look like fools again, the Packers will be successful in spite of them.

Coach JV's picture

Yeah... I immediately doubt the validity of "unnamed sources" and the article was full of them.
Without doubt, there has certainly been dysfunction within the Packers organization, but Dunne's article was also exactly what Rodgers said, " this was a smear attack by a writer trying to advance his career talking with mostly irrelevant, bitter players who all have an agenda."

And - for those who will say so - Arod did NOT cheapshot Jennings or Finley... he outright smacked the shit out of them.

It's 2019 and the new way of things starts today!


Gort's picture

These aren't the droids we are looking for.
Move along.

JohnnyLogan's picture

The only ones who could have known what transpired in the phone call were Murphy and Rodgers. So who told Dunne? It sounded fishy all along. Tyler Dunne the Jussie Smollett of journalism.

Montana's picture

I'm glad Aaron spoke out. With all the conjecture and fallout over the BR article it was ripe for AR to speak out.

Time to move on to football, new HC, and a new era... Go Pack

EddieLeeIvory's picture

Murphy isn't dumb enough to say a lie like that to Dunne, to come out like a tough guy.
And Rodgers surely didn't tell Tyler that.

So where that originated from I have no idea.
But Dunne is no hack. He's better than most. I wonder who his "source" is for a 2-person phone conversation.

stevehj's picture

I'm not a journalist, but there are a number of folks on this site that certainly hold that title that could weigh in. But it seems to me if someone is going to write an article with numerous slams on the people in the article, shouldn't the journalist ask the affected people for comment before publishing it? There is no doubt the writer put a lot of effort and research into the work, but isn't a fundamental piece missing? In light of Aaron Rodger's comments, this article has the makings of yellow journalism (aka "fake news"). I guess its just a sign of the times.

stillwater's picture

Dunne did reach out to Rodgers and McCarthy. They declined to respond.

I think the "sign of the times" is people believing what they want to, regardless of the facts, or if the "facts" aren't reported by their own news source, then they can't possibly be true.

All that aside, I was glad to see Rodgers defend McCarthy. The man deserves respect.

Since '61's picture

As I posted from the beginning of this tempest in a thimble. Where was the other side of the story in Dunne’s piece. He went for the click bait and the one sided slant. He had his 15 minutes of fame and now poof, gone. He can return to his fish rap rag because that’s where he will remain now.

That’s what happens when a person does half a job or is trying to force their own agenda.

“Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we first we practice to deceive. The poem Marmion by Sir Walter Scott. Dunne should try reading a real author before his next piece.

Good for you Aaron. Now put this BS behind us and go win a title. Go Pack Go! Thanks, Since ‘61

Coach JV's picture

Word... a REAL journalist would have asked Mgmt, MM, and AR for comments and/or rebuttals. Or at the very least say "they refused to comment".

This was hack writing...

Doug_In_Sandpoint's picture

Sir Walter Scott...not the bard as far as I know.

Since '61's picture

Correct Sir. Good job. From the poem Marmion. Brain fart on my part.
I have made the appropriate edit to my post.
Thanks for the correction. Since '61

Guam's picture

Not asking the subject of a piece for commentary is unprofessional and Dunne just got exposed as a clickbait specialist, not a journalist. It would be nice if McCarthy or Murphy weighed in and finished the demolition.

Dunne's piece was titled "The Downfall of Packers", but it may have been his own downfall. From previous work, I thought he was better than this tripe.

Since '61's picture

Too much of the media has become driven by click bait, ratings, money(of course), sensatialism, desperate to be relevant during the off-season, lack of respect for the audience, etc.

As the late, great Paul Harvey would say, "That's the rest of the story."
Dunne failed to get the other side of the story.

I work in a different industry but I am always telling my research team to get the rest of the story, or there is more to this story (really data), we've got to find it, keep digging. Due diligence never really ends.
Thanks, Since '61

Christopher Gennaro's picture

Dunne thinking....Research that takes too much time, and may go counter to my narrative, can't have that. Now let's send this beautiful piece of journalism.

Jared's picture

As is typical for AR, it’s everybody else’s fault not mine. There’s too much smoke not to have a fire. Can’t throw to Janis, St. Brown, Valdez-Scantling & Moore because he doesn’t trust them. I don’t recall hearing Brady constantly saying that of his receivers. It’s time for AR to “put up or shut up”.

Pierre's picture

That’s for excuses now with MM gone...Rodgers needs to produce at QB this season at the elite level he is being paid by the Packers. No reason why they should not make the playoffs unless Rodgers just can’t get it done maintaining drives and scoring TDs. Bottom line is he has to get a lot more wins in 2019 or he needs to be replaced at QB sooner than later.

jannes bjornson's picture

Its hard to throw to greenhorns running the incorrect routs or the white flash from Stonefingers University. Where is he now? Gutey will show his trust in the WR corps lined up after Adams and Allison in a couple of weeks.
Maybe the blog rumours are correct and he goes with a WR in the first round! Brady has been tossing to Edelmann for over ten years, Hogan is a veteran brought in as well as Moss, as well as Cordarelle, as well as Cooks , as well as Welker as well as Amendola. Belichick does not like rookie WRs wasting reps in his offense. Very few last too long. The TEs usually are veterans brought in to complement Gronk. He will probably draft two TEs in the next two weeks. Get a clue.

Nick Perry's picture

Jordy Nelson once said it takes 3 years...THREE to really learn this offense as a WR.

In McCarthy's offense there's MULTIPLE adjustments a WR needs to make for each thing a defense does. THAT'S the trust part, the WR going right instead of left. The WR cutting his route off at 5 yards instead of 9. The WR making a sharp cut instead of a lazy rounded cut. WHEN the WR learns ALL of those adjustments, then he EARNS the trust.

Jonathan Spader's picture

Winning cures all.

PackfanNY's picture

I have no idea who is telling the truth. Frankly, I don’ t care and it doesn’t really matter. Most of the people involved are gone. I only wonder how many more times I am going to have to listen to anything with Greg Jennings and Jermichael Finley’s names attached. Give it a rest boys time to move on with your lives!

Since '61's picture

Amen! Thanks, Since '61

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

A lot of it doesn't matter anymore. Some things, if true, might well matter.

Community Guy's picture

is Aaron sure he knows the motivations of Tyler Dunne?

if Murphy didn't say his quote, why didn't Murphy publicly deny it in his recent "Murphy Takes 5"?

additionally, i am looking for a response to the storyline about freezing out certain young receivers. at the very least, Rodgers has to take responsibility for publicly calling out receivers instead of confronting receivers in the film room or in other more appropriate venues.

Rodgers needs a "mea culpa".

PatrickGB's picture

Quality Reporting of any kind is a thing of the past. Not just in sports. I wonder if journalism schools still exist?
“Sources? we don’t need no stinking sources”.

jannes bjornson's picture

Thank corporate media. Deregulation of the FCC. They want to control the message, but you don't have to believe it. There are hundreds of jounalists working for blogs delivering fair, accurate and comprehensive coverage of our current political, economic and social order. As citizens it is our responsibility to stay Informed.

Old School's picture

I remember during the "Favre Wars", when both sides were using media outlets to get their story out. The Favre camp used Peter King, and the team used Jay Glazer.

One day, Glazer reports that Favre threw a hissy fit because we didn't get Randy Moss. Where do you think Glazer got that story? Favre denied, of course. They flew the plane down to Hattiesburg to get Favre to do a joint presser with Thompson and McCarthy to play down the story.

The reaction of the fans was much like it is now. Some believe their quarterback, some believe the team. Me? I root for the Packers. Always. Nobody will ever be bigger than the team to me.

Barazinho's picture

The lack of quality reporting is also due to downsizing. Lots of staff have been cut in the past 10 years, which means quality suffers. A past connection of mine described one of the major news outlets as a "ghost town", because the building was so empty compared to what it used to be (a connection who was "downsized" himself).

Skip greenBayless's picture

I Stand With Dunne!! Rodgers has an agenda to keep the money flowing his way. Of course he's going to deny he never said it. Murphy will also deny it. Dunne would not just make that up. Someone's a mole. It's either Rodgers, Murphy or someone close to Rodgers leaked it. John Kirk and I had major discussions on this topic last week. Kirk thinks it's a code red.

What we need to do is have a full investigation on this. I'm talking Robert Mueller like investigation. This story is too big to simply dismiss. I want to know who is lying!! I'm a stockholder damnit!!


Nick Perry's picture

I'll refund you your money personally if you just go away and DON'T come back under yet another name.

Barazinho's picture

This post got my satire-sarcasm-spidey senses tingling...

Paul Konieczny's picture

I was wondering when Rash Diprock would crawl out of the woodwork and tell us AR is lying to save his legacy. Was kind of hoping you wouldn’t, I had a kill shot comment for ya. I’ll save it for a later date. No explanation date on this one.

IceBowl's picture

Oh skipdash,

You say ARod had an agenda to keep the money flowing his way. I say Dunne has an agenda to keep money flowing his way. Which OPINION is correct?

I think we need to do is have a full investigation on this. I'm talking Robert Mueller like investigation. Just like his last finding, we'll definitely find out.

And if you are now displeased with your stock, I offer face value.

crayzpackfan's picture

That douchebag Colin Cowturd will undoubtably spin this against Rodgers. Just watch! Words like needy, diva, passive aggressive, and self absorbed will fall from mouth with a gallon of spit into his mic and all over his chin. He can’t stand Rodgers hype over his beloved Brady. I just don’t understand why all this is even a big media story. The team is completely different now from last year. People are looking at a car wreck that isn’t even there. Time to move on already.

jannes bjornson's picture

That guy has finally reached his low-water mark at fox where he belongs.
How many wives threw his ass out the door? Its hard to keep track. Too bad the dueling rules are no longer en vogue. Guaranteed that guy would be running to russia. with steven segal if he was challenged.

crayzpackfan's picture

Cowturd actually led his show with Rodgers bashing. So predictable. Cowturd is nothing more than a contrarian, hyperbolic, sports hack.

Guam's picture

I think there is a story out there about the downfall of the Packers, but it has a lot more to do with the loss of Schneider, Dorsey and McKenzie (2010 to 2013) as well as TT's declining health than it has to do with AR and MM. The Packer front office was decimated by its own success and the resulting drafts reflected the decline in FO talent. Lack of player talent led to the Packer decline, not any kerfuffle between AR and MM.

Too bad Dunne got it so wrong...…..

ILPackerBacker's picture

If you READ what Rodgers said he admitted to being on the golf course.

Unless he was playing alone it was not a 2 person conversation. There was NOTHING to indicate that either GUTE or MM were alone.

ILPackerBacker's picture


If the boss tells Rodgers to not be a problem then why is that bad?

It seems like few people posting and fewer writing have ever even had a real job

sam1's picture

Dunne sounds more like his name should have a C in it after the N! Just like a couple of posters on here belong in the same category! Dunne is a guy looking for his 3 minutes!

Skip greenBayless's picture

Dunne's a star for exposing the truth and you can't handle it Sam1. You and about 90% of the people here. When is everybody going to be like Kirk, Old School and I and WAKE UP!!


sam1's picture

When I or IF get like you guys I would quit posting and making a daily fool of myself. Dunce is too good for many people!

Paul Konieczny's picture

I guess we can only have 3 experts that inform everyone else how wrong they are. I miss Crote.

IceBowl's picture

Paul Konieczny,

I think we have one that doubles or triples (or more) to tell us how smart they are.

LarryPennell's picture

All I know is IceBowl is shutting the haters down hard, how can you argue with the man, his logic is flawless!

John Kirk's picture

I have no doubt you think that way.

IceBowl's picture


I don't know who, as you say, "the haters" are. Not me.

Truth and logic have a way of floating up to the surface. If that's what you mean, thanks for the complement.

I have addressed some posts that were baseless opinion, hearsay and/or out of context posts. Glad you like the corrections.

PAPackerbacker's picture

Go! Pack! Go! - Go! Pack! Go! - Go! Pack! Go! - Go! Pack! Go!

EddieLeeIvory's picture

Jennings & J-Mike are pricks. No credence to what those 2 divagirls say.

The part I want asked & explained is how 12 has treated his young WRs. What he reportedly did to the rookie WRs last year & what we know he did to Janis, if that's true, that is not traits you want in a QB & obviously a "leader".

I was always pissed at 13 for publicly bitching about Janis & other young WRs about "not being on the same page" with him. Yet we saw him in Seattle F-up a simple combo route with Jordy & Cobb each open vs 1 on 1 coverage & end up throwing the pass right to a Seahawk DB for a huge gift Int which cost us points in the game that kept us from another Super Bowl. He didn't publicly berate Cobb or Jordy.

IceBowl's picture


Are you actually the packer player? I would like to give you the credibility actually being there deserves. But we are all really anonymous.

Anyway, I am retired, having had many supervisors, managers, and bosses in my numerous jobs. Blue and white collar. Govt and private. So I do have a varied point of reference.

In my experience, I have seldom seen supervision, critiques, or instruction that all accepted as the right way, the best way, the most effective way. Some thought they were the subject of the problem and some thought they were above the problem. Some just listened and learned.

The point is you can't tailor instruction to individual needs unless you have unlimited time and patience. I can't say I witnessed unlimited in real life. So, it naturally follows some feathers will be ruffled, even feelings hurt or even resentment. Intentional, I hope not, preferably not, but mostly unavoidable. Depends on your attitude.

So, does anyone have a perfect solution to training, teaching when there is a limited time frame and varied personalities? If so, they would be rich and famous on their book tours.

But it would be so nice to see everyone perfectly happy learning what they don't know. But that is a fantasy world.

IceBowl's picture

It is funny?, not really, that truth and logic have a way of ending conversations!

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