A feature piece published today by ESPN senior writer Mina Kimes promised an “unmasked” Aaron Rodgers, but in reality the Packers quarterback said a lot but revealed very little.
Speaking with Kimes at her home on the west coast, Rodgers touched on topics ranging from religion to his family but didn’t delve too deep on any one subject. As always, Rodgers played his cards close, talking about his personal life in a guarded manner.
The whole piece is still worth a read, as it does give some insight into Rodgers’ thought process about his life and football, but don’t expect many bombshells. Here are a few of the highlights from the article:
On his changing religious mindset:
“I think organized religion can have a mind-debilitating effect, because there is an exclusivity that can shut you out from being open to the world, to people, and energy, and love and acceptance.”
On being somewhat uncomfortable with his celebrity status:
(Rodgers is) wary of complaining about his own celebrity, given the attendant benefits. But he admits there are "some things" that cause him discomfort. “Decreased privacy,” he says. “And increased strain or pressure or stress associated with relationships. Friendships and dating relationships.”
On why he hasn’t addressed reported issues with his family:
"Because a lot of people have family issues," he says. "I'm not the only one that does. It needs to be handled the right way."
On his former teammate Ryan O’Callaghan, who recently came out as gay:
"I'm incredibly proud of him. I know he had a lot of fear about it, and how he would be accepted, and how people would change around him. I think society is finally moving in the right direction, as far as treating all people with respect and love and acceptance and appreciation. And the locker room, I think the sport is getting closer."
On Colin Kaepernick’s ongoing unemployment:
"I think he should be on a roster right now. I think because of his protests, he's not."
On whether his career would be incomplete without another Super Bowl win:
"I mean, it'd be disappointing. But no. I'd love to go back at least a few more times. But at some point, my career's going to be over, and I'm going to move on and do other things and be excited about that chapter in my life."
It’s not terribly surprising that Rodgers doesn’t go deeper on any of these subjects. There’s very little upside for doing so, as he mentions in the piece. It still gives us more than we typically see from Rodgers, but as always, a full picture remains tantalizingly out of reach.