State Farm backs 'great ambassador' Aaron Rodgers amid heavy criticism

State Farm said it will not sever ties with Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers amid the controversy surrounding his COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. 

“Aaron Rodgers has been a great ambassador for our company for much of the past decade. We don’t support some of the statements that he has made, but we respect his right to have his own personal point of view,” a State Farm spokesperson said in a statement to the Wall Street Journal on Monday. 

The spokesperson also said the company recognizes that its “customers, employees, agents and brand ambassadors” all have differing viewpoints, saying its mission is to “support safer, stronger communities.” 

ADVERTISEMENT

“We encourage vaccinations, but respect everyone’s right to make a choice based on their personal circumstances,” the spokesperson added. 

According to Apex Marketing Group data, about 1.5 percent of the nearly 400 State Farm commercials that aired on Sunday through 8 p.m. featured Rodgers, compared to 20 percent two Sundays prior. 

Rodgers, a three-time NFL MVP, became the center of controversy Wednesday when he tested positive for COVID-19 and it emerged that he was unvaccinated. 

Rodgers was asked earlier this year if he was vaccinated, to which he replied “Yeah, I’m immunized," leading many to believe he was vaccinated. 

During an appearance on the “The Pat McAfee Show” on Friday, Rodgers defended his decision not to get vaccinated, saying he was allergic to ingredients in the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and was worried about side effects from the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.  

Rodgers also claimed he was a victim of the “woke mob” and “cancel culture,” and criticized the NFL and its health policies implemented to stop the spread of the novel virus.  

Wisconsin healthcare provider Prevea Health announced on Saturday it was ending its nine-year partnership with the Rodgers, saying it remains deeply committed to encouraging all eligible populations get vaccinated. 

The NFL and its players’ union are reviewing whether Rodgers and the Packers violated any aspects of its COVID-19 protocol, which is stricter for unvaccinated players than those who are vaccinated, the Washington Post reported.