The star quarterback spent 10 days in quarantine in early November before making his return on Sunday, Nov. 14., in the Green Bay Packers game against the Seattle Seahawks. Aaron didn't develop long-term COVID-19 symptoms. Why the confusion?
Why do people believe that Aaron Rodgers has COVID toes?
The saga began a while back, when Aaron cracked a joke during his regular appearance on The Pat McAfee Show. Aaron tested positive for COVID-19 on Nov. 3, 2021, and he decided to provide a brief health update for fans during his weekly slot. He said he was symptom-free. Unfortunately, he also made a sarcastic remark about COVID toes, which sparked the debate.
"No lingering effects other than the COVID toe," Aaron jokingly remarked.
Aaron's comment got taken out of context. The next time it appeared in print, it was presented as Aaron's way of non-sarcastically telling viewers that he does have COVID toes. The condition is characterized by the swelling and discoloration of the toes, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
Soon enough, Aaron embarked on a vicious battle to prove that he is right — and that the articles reporting on his supposed health condition are wrong. The Wall Street Journal is credited as the first outlet to break the news, and Aaron too called out a journalist. (It's understood he gave the wrong name.)
"Oh, there's no lesions whatsoever. Oh, what a surprise," Aaron said during the Zoom presser held on Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021, per Sports Illustrated. "No, that's actually called disinformation when you perpetuate false information about an individual. I have a fractured toe. So I expect a full apology from Molly Knight and whoever her editor was. I did get a kick out of reading that article."
During the session, Aaron held his left foot to the camera to show that his toes aren't discolored — which is a relatively common problem people with COVID-19 experience. He changed his Twitter profile picture soon afterward to further emphasize that he doesn't have COVID toes.
Aaron says he fractured his toe during "pre-ramp."
According to The Washington Post, Aaron suffered a minor accident during the "pre-ramp" period, which sportsmen who tested positive for COVID-19 have to undergo before returning to the field. He learned about the full extent of the injury while receiving an X-ray ahead of the Green Bay Packers game against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, Nov. 14.
The situation likely escalated on Sunday, Nov. 21, 2021., in the first half of the game against the Minnesota Vikings.
"It's very, very painful," Aaron told The Washington Post. "I got stepped on in the first half, and that kind of activated all the symptoms that I was having."
It's understood that Aaron is now looking into surgical options with the view to go under the knife during the period known as the bye week.