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Aaron Rodgers demands WSJ apologize over 'COVID Toe' coverage
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers on Wednesday sought to set the record straight about his recent toe injury, dismissing claims that he had a condition known as "COVID toe" after referencing it the day before.
Rodgers told reporters Wednesday that he had a fractured toe and demanded an apology from The Wall Street Journal, which published a story referring to his toe injury as a medical condition brought on by his recent COVID-19 diagnosis.
The Journal story, titled "Aaron Rodgers Doesn't Just Have Any Toe Injury. He Has COVID Toe," cited remarks Rodgers made in an appearance on "The Pat McAfee Show" on Tuesday in which he joked with the host and remarked that he "didn't have any lingering effects other than COVID toe."
The quarterback said Wednesday he was disappointed in media coverage of his comments.
"That's actually called disinformation when you perpetuate false information about an individual. I have a fractured toe," Rodgers said Wednesday, according to ESPN.
The quarterback added that he "had never heard of COVID toe before."
"Pat made a joke about it on the show, and I mentioned yesterday that it's worse than a turf toe and it must be a bone issue," he said, according to ESPN.
Rodgers took off his shoes and showed his bare toes - sans lesions - at a press conference on Wednesday in reaction to the Journal story, which was widely quoted by news outlets throughout the day.
The quarterback said he expected an apology from the Journal and added that he did "get a kick out of reading that article."
"I'm glad you asked just so I could show you the lesions of my foot here, so if I have enough room on this camera, let me see if I can," Rodgers said during his Zoom news conference, ESPN reported.
"Oh, there's no lesions whatsoever. Oh, what a surprise," he quipped.
The Wall Street Journal did not immediately respond to an inquiry from The Hill. The newspaper's story was updated Wednesday to reflect Rodgers's latest remarks.
"COVID toe" is a condition that can cause skin lesions on a person's toe after a COVID-19 infection. It can last several months.
Rodgers has been at the center of controversy after he tested positive for the coronavirus in November and confirmed he was unvaccinated.