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So I'm hoping that we can have a conversation with Aaron Rodgers that is open and honest about stuff, but I also fear asking you the wrong question and then having you click baited because then all of a sudden we wrecked the relationship. So help me understand where we are now with you talking to the media. Does it serve you, to be honest, I guess, in these interviews is what I would ask.

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That is a hell of a first question. I was wondering if there was commas in there, maybe a period you're going to stop at some point there, buddy. Listen, first of all, they're not project. I love you, but please do not project on to me things that are actually not the truth. If I state facts that are not really conjecture anymore, that go beyond the idea of a subjective opinion into more of an objective fact about the state of journalism today, that doesn't mean that I still don't participate in it and understand it's worth my issue.

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As I was watching this, you know, video of Denzel, he's in the red carpet and he's talking about how if you don't read the newspaper, you're uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you're misinformed. I think that's an opinion. And many people share not just in the sports world, but that there is a rush to be first all the time instead of a rush to be correct or truthful. And I think that the click bait and the lack of attention span for so many of the consumers kind of leads to that.

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So, look, it is what it is. I understand that's part of the business now. And that based on the all power for dollar, you know, that's kind of the way it goes. But I have an obligation to speak to the media every week. And then there's a few folks like you, too, and Colbran and Jim Rome and Dan Patrick and guys that I've, you know, done interviews with over the years, you know, Dennis Miller as well, who I you know, I love I love talking to those guys.

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But anything I say I know can be can be used for a headline. And I think I'm just resigned to that's the state of media. And, you know, when I call someone that's mean I'm, you know, super pissed about it doesn't mean I think it's fantastic. But at the same time, you know, I understand it's the kind of the state of journalism, unfortunately.

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Well, I want to talk to you about the state of journalism. I want to talk to you about the state of America. But you just said something about you understand the value of doing this. I actually don't understand for you from someone of your star level when you can have all your own outlets. I think this is an obligation or responsibility. Maybe you think it's a duty, but I don't think it's valuable to you anymore. I think there are only places where this can hurt you.

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You don't need it in any way.

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I think that's an interesting opinion. And I mean, I don't know if I necessarily fully agree with it. I think there is you know, there's legal obligation to speak to the media. And then there's there's one thing I think, you know, as as my you know, my give a crap meter goes down year by year. I think it's fun to have outlets like this where I get to talk to you and to God's people. I respect any industry and open up a little more.

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I think there's been you know, for much of my career, I had played things a little close to the vest. And I did last three or four years. I've been a lot more forthcoming with things that are important to me and continue to let kind of the outside world outside the locker room and my inner circle kind of just get to know a little bit more about me. And that's why I appreciate these opportunities, because I think there's stigmas and ideas about what, you know, players are like, you know, guys in my position.

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And I think people are often interested to hear that I'm not just a, you know, a dumb jock. I have interests, I have ideas, I have thoughts. And and I care about, you know, everything that's going on in the world and the history of the world. And and I also have a lot of, you know, non football related interests.

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Well, what changed, though, when you say you went from close to the vest? Because I've been making fun of for years the quarterback speak, that's required to just get the questions away from your locker. You said close to the vest and three or four years ago. No, I've got things to say. Did you change did America change? Both.

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I just think I said it. You know, I'm not going to I was never a cliche guy. I mean, I just I can't stand the cliche ridden interviews, you know, one day that those guys give him my best shot. You know, I'm just trying to do my best and Lord willing to work, you know, basically the line from Bull Durham that Costner is telling Andy Dufresne, you know, it's never been big on that. But I think I think I've come to the point where.

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Yeah, you like that one of I mean, it's it's it's a place you merge movie.

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And I know I know most people don't catch that.

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But I just think it's been it's been fun to find opportunities to kind of share more about my my kind of my personality. I think there are some misnomers about me shared by folks that actually didn't know me very well. And it's been nice to kind of rewrite some of those those narratives.

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And I like to go the other way and say, you need this very, very much. Perhaps not, Jim Rome at this point, perhaps some of those other shows.

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But these conversations, this and this is desperately this is the one you think he needs, but he doesn't need any of the other director. Yeah, I think I agree with Stu Godse on that, I think that this needs to be the exclusive place for you merging Andy Dufrene and Bull Durham.

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Yeah, yeah. He doesn't seem to agree with that, too, but he does.

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He needs us to be able to have a couple. Oh, wait a minute. What was being misunderstood about you? Like what was being misrepresented. I think when when you let other people, you know, kind of steal your own personal narrative at times, it, you know, most of the time is from that person's perspective. And and furthermore, it's not related to the truth because a lot of times feelings and emotions are based on, you know, offence and insecurities from from those people.

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So the projections that people put out often say more about them than the person they're talking about. It often comes from places of sadness in their own personal hurt. Now, there are things that I've done that I regret, but I was just tired of the same the same people, you know, with the same tired narrative, you know, because that's what's so you're going to have fifty two guys and a lot going back into my character. And if somebody outside locker room says I'm about me, that's what gets played on all these shows.

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And that becomes kind of the groupthink, unfortunately for certain guys. But, you know, so when you have opportunities to to share a little more, you take them. But for the most part, I think that's tied with worry less and less about about some of those opinions. It's just when you get to few opportunities with people you respect in the business, you know, they don't just ask the standard boring football questions. You know, it's fun to kind of share some insights.

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All right.

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This is the part I don't get, though, because you were very gentle there and you don't name names, but what the hell did you do to Greg Jennings? And you're Michael Friendly. Like, I thought all you did was make him rich. I thought all you did was wrong. That doesn't make them a lot more relevant than they were. But any time anyone needs a quote from anyone that TNT Rogers, they go to Greg Jennings or Michael Friendly.

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Look, I do not have a problem with either person. I really don't. You know, I enjoy playing both guys. I mean, Greg was a fantastic player and so was Chamique. I mean, the physical giftedness of both those guys was phenomenal. And we had some incredible moments together. Greg, you know, got two touchdowns in the Super Bowl. And Mike, you know, was on on his way to a, you know, many Pro Bowl, all pro type career, in my opinion, before his horrific neck injury.

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You know, I think I'd see it. I see it clearly. There is some hurt for sure. And I don't have a problem with them. I just don't like it when other people get to share get to kind of influence the group narrative about bad things about me that I don't feel like are necessarily true.

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Was there one untruth above all others that was most bothersome, or is that getting too close to the bone? Because then you arm people with something that they can know bothers, you know?

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I mean, look, I think we're talking way too much about this at this point. Like I said, this is my, you know, have a problem with either of those two guys. I don't I don't give a lot of credence to really many of the opinions on TV. My issue that I talked to Kyle about was that I think it should be more about, you know, truthful reporting than who needs to be first and and ease up on the click bait, because it's a disservice to the readers and the folks who don't have enough attention span to focus on, you know, to be able to to read to spend a couple of minutes reading an article, which many times does not have a lot to do with what the actual the headline says.

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Well, you're talking about two there.

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He's the one who doesn't have the attention and for this stuff. But help me help me with this, though, because you're talking about uninformed opinions on television.

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And I would say, given your expertise, I'm not an uninformed I'm not an uninformed in I'm then I'm saying opinions are meant to be polarizing, got their nature. And I think I think sometimes, you know, some of the folks actually believe the opinions. I think they also know how polarizing certain opinions can be. And it creates this show format where there's just a lot of I think this this person thinks that she thinks this, he thinks this.

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And I think its opinions have become facts instead of the actual facts of the subject that we are talking about. And I think that's a place in our society where we've gone, where it's more important to voice your opinion than to do research and figure out what the facts of the situation are. And then facts obviously become subjective at that point, too, because our own truth in general is based on our reality of situations. So the nature of truth becomes slanted when our subjective lens influences our opinion and in our opinion, becomes an entitled part of our persona.

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All right, how do you feel time during the pandemic, like what did you do with all that time? I imagine you reading long books, maybe a new hobby on movies. As you fill time, you usually go places.

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Could you go any interesting places?

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No, I was I was down in Peru doing Machu Picchu, and then I had to get out of there before that country closed and Central America closed and and the US us closed. And once I got back. Yeah. You know, the thing that I did, which, you know, I'm sure millions of other people have done at some point is I went back and watched the office again from start to finish the American office. So I was doing a lot of Netflix saying I'm a big fan of the show Afterlife, which stars Ricky Gervais, who's done a number of shows over the years, including the British version of the office, which was which preceded the American version, also a great show called Derik and Extras.

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But Afterlife is a fantastic show. And then, you know, I had to break down and binge on a couple of the, you know, crazy ones like Love is Blind Tiger King, The Circle. There was a lot of mindless TV. And then I kind of woke up one day and I was like, man, I need to get out of the house and do is. And it was it was it was strange. What did you have planned?

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What did you have planned in Peru?

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Well, Peru, we have to do most of the things we had planned. We did Machu Picchu, but we wanted to head down to Chile as well and see Patagonia didn't do that. A good friend of mine, Max Haoma, the golfer who's great on Twitter, he was going to be his first time in the Masters this year because he won the Wells Fargo last year. So I was planning on going down and watching the par three on Wednesday and then watching his first round on Thursday.

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That would be a lot of fun to see him down there at the at the Masters. Obviously, there's a group of how I take a bunch of offensive linemen and some former teammates down to the Derby every year. That didn't happen. There's a lot of a fun springtime events when we're back here in Green Bay that we do. You know, some some team bonding stuff will take some weekend trips, go places. So, you know, those things we obviously didn't do.

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And it's, you know, really freaking hard to do it at this point now as well, because we're still in this thing. But, yeah, I was a lot of a lot of book reading their stats and a lot of indoor stuff was their personal growth stuff that ended up getting sabotaged.

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Because I know when visiting the Dalai Lama, you're always searching for some betterment somewhere. Did any of that stuff get lost because the off season you're using for growth?

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Usually, yeah, yeah, yeah. That's a good point. In a lot of the stuff we did in Peru was great. You know, we did a fun sweat lodge with this family that comes and it makes you get these rocks that are just, you know, them in the fire. They're sacred rocks and they just smoke in this whole, you know, tent out and you just sweating, just dripping from head to toe. And that was a really fun, fun ceremony to do down there in Peru.

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And climbing Machu Picchu is is a real spiritual experience. We climb the mountain, Mount Machu Picchu, which was a seven hour hike that looks down on the ruins. That was a fantastic, fantastic trip. And there are some really cool guides who were with us. I love the history of it. And and just that culture is just so interesting to me. So that was that was basically the the fun spiritual stuff. But, yeah, still going to still going to plant some more stuff going got to get over to Egypt at some point when that comes down over there.

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But on the heels up and and we get to start traveling again.

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This is a broad question, but what is the nature of your spirituality like? What what is it that you're searching for and what is it that you define as spiritual? Oh, I mean, I think everybody has their own interpretation, I kind of grew up in organized religion and, you know, that works for for some people. You know, I think the idea of being we all are spiritual folks. You know, some just have a practice that is working on different things.

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And, you know, some believe in one God, many gods. You know, there's a lot of different types of organization and sects within the specific religions. You know, for me, I think a lot of it revolves around a mindfulness practice. First of being able to to practice meditation, quiet my mind, find a centered feeling, and then, you know, just understanding the actions that I'm doing and the healing that I'm doing, how it all kind of plays together as far as, you know, what I'm meant to do in this life time and and what karma I'm meant to figure out in this lifetime as well.

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Are you any good at meditation? Like, how much practice do you have there and how hard is the practice? I have a hard time with it. I can't get my mind to stop.

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Yeah, it's it's been a process for sure. The more that I dedicate myself to that, the easier it is to really quiet my mind and be able to turn off and and really kind of go inside and be able to have a blank mind. For me, it's just been about dedicating myself to it. So doing it multiple times a day and then finding a space that I can do that in is most important. You know, you have to have an environment.

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It's tough. You know, I'm sure if you have kids or, you know, music going on, our TV's on or whatever, but having a space that can be just a quiet, quiet space for you or maybe it's outside has really, really helped me find in those spots.

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I've been wanting to ask you for a while what you make of what's going on in America. It's such a difficult, complicated time and it's a difficult, complicated question. But I can't imagine that everything that's going on in this country is escaping your attention.

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No, I think I think if I had to pick one word to sum up what's been going on, it's it's fear. I think that's the root of so many things. It's the roots of, you know, covid and many of the responses to it. It's the root of, you know, the social inequality and and police brutality and opinions on that, I think is the root of that. There's a lot of fear in things that make you feel uncomfortable talking about or experiencing, you know, and I think there's a lot of fear in politics that's really divided both sides where now there's, you know, an extreme right and extreme left and there seems to be less moderation or less people who can look at issues objectively instead of partisan.

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Everything doesn't have to be a political issue. There's there's still things that are right and wrong. It doesn't have to come down, in my opinion, to everything being was President Trump say or was Biden say, that's the opinion I'm going to get get behind. And I think I just think there's so many things that people really do agree on. But there's a fear of voicing opinions about certain things that are against, you know, the partisan line that you may hold dear to you or that that you may believe in.

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And I just think that's that until we replace that fear with the love, we're going to be in in this predicament. And it's, you know, a love of oneself, a love of each other, and then an understanding that the system that we've built will only improve if we create a new system. The system will not change unless there's people who can come together and create something different, because I think there's just too many things locked into the system that will not allow it to change.

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The fact that we still have two political parties I think is one of the greatest, you know, markers of that that I think I would think there's many people in this country who look and wonder and scratch their head. Why are these really the two best options to lead? You know, we've always in America felt is the free world. You are a libertarian.

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That is what we've just discovered right now, is that all of us together have discovered. I wonder, though, Erin, because you what do you say to your television as you see science, you know, diminished expertise, diminished, as you see people arguing over whether or not we should be wearing a mask like this is all. It seems very silly to make some of this stuff about politics, then I think that's the culture that we live in now.

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I think because the attention spans are so short, there's not a there's less free thinking now. There's less research, there's less credence given given to specific opinions, because everybody has an opinion now and there's more entitlement, I think, in the country. So everybody feels like their opinion matters the most. And a lot of it is due to social media because now we all have an outlet. And so we feel like our opinions or our appearances or associations are so much more important than they used to be when in order to get a hold of somebody, you to email somebody or write a letter to them or actually call them on the phone with and dial it or turn a little turn a little thing.

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Now, you know, there's just there's just so many more opinions. And I think, as Denzel said in it, there's it's hard to even believe your eyes sometimes. And what you're actually witnessing when it comes to, you know, I've been accused of being liberal when I played golf with Obama. And, you know, I haven't really been, you know, accused of being a conservative a whole lot most of the time. And, you know, when we did locked arms for the you know, to protest police brutality, same thing when I made another statement about something else recently.

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In fact, I'm I'm very, you know, apolitical. I don't think the system actually serves the people in general. I think we need a lot of change in there and get people representing us who aren't lifers, who don't basically get in and start campaigning again when we need campaign finance reform to help with that. I think there's a lot of things wrong with the system, and I think that it's going to keep staying the same way as long as long as it's allowed to operate the way it's been operating.

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What did you make about your leagues, about face on Black Lives Matter, kneeling like all of that, like as that happened and it was a tense time for all of you guys to be in that. I don't know how much thought you gave to kneeling. They could have used a white quarterback who was a free thinker to kneel. But I understand why it's difficult to do that with your customer base, your position and bringing attention to that. So I don't know how much you wrestled with it, but what did you make about what seems like just corporate about face?

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That was I don't know if it's sincere or not, but it was weird to see after four years of punishing Colin Kaepernick not playing here.

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I mean, that's an interesting subject. I think. I think it's pretty obvious some of the reasons for that. You know, I saw something recently that the kid from I think it was Orlando who stood and I guess, you know, he's standing based on, you know, a lot of his on his on his faith. But I did read and with was one thing they said, and I'm paraphrasing, but it was it was if you're standing there, that doesn't mean that you don't support the Black Lives Matter movement.

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And I think for many of us, it was, you know, a few years ago it was we talked a lot about what we wanted to do in order to show a united front. And I think the pressures around all of it made us do what we did. I think one thing that we've tried to talk about a lot in our leadership group is now that there's even more awareness and the problem, you know, has continued, what actions, action steps can we do to continue to move this from awareness to real change?

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And I think that's what we've been trying to do here conversationally and and money wise with the Packers is make sure that we are looking for organizations and looking for legislation that can be amended or changed, that can help change the system because the system is broken. When they say they talk about racism or inequality, it's systemic. I think people forget that sometimes when I believe that means is the systemic part is is built into the system. And unless we change that system, then there won't be a lot of real change.

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So the you know, the awareness is great, but I think there needs to be even more and more thought. And there has been and there's been some amazing things that guys have done. But the system is is what needs to be attacked at this point and changed. I would love to know, Aaron, I don't know whether you can answer this question without getting sabotaged, but I would love to know the honest reaction that you had watching what happened to Drew Brees, where he just goes on a business show and he gives the same answer he's always given about respecting the anthem.

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And next thing you know, he has to apologize three times because the entire climate in the country has changed. Well, I think that's you know, that's what's going on in our world now, is you you have to be, you know, really aware of what you're saying. And there's, you know, a lot of apologies in today's society society because people are saying things that aren't, you know, acceptable or appropriate anymore. You know, there's a lot of keyboard justice warriors, you know, who don't really have a cause, but they love to be offended on social media and start, you know, trying to cancel people.

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You know, this culture has turned into a cancer culture and they're looking for the next person to get rid of. And many of them, you know, probably do you know, I'm talking about the pedophiles and the rapists and and, you know, the people with some skeletons in the closet finally coming out. But I know, Drew, I think Drew is a good man. And, you know, I think he's obviously he was stating opinion.

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I think that I said isn't to go as well. You know, in this country, there's no room anymore for an opinion that's outside of yours. Now, even if let me be clear, I believe in the First Amendment, even if it's something that really lights you up and bothers you or is rooted in stuff that you just don't agree with and is so antiquated. The fact of the matter is it's still that person's opinion. And you might hate it, but that is protected speech.

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I might not like it. One, I want to hear it when the media is blasting it over and over and over. That's just blasting this polarity and division instead of like I said a few years ago, just ignoring some of the stuff like and haven't shown indifference towards towards opinions that you don't agree with instead of we have to cancel every single person's opinion and even on things that they said 20 or 30 years ago, sometimes in a different environment.

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And maybe they've learned I mean, I think about how much I've grown, you know, consciousness and awareness in the last year go back five years, ten years, you know, just the world changes and you grow and evolve and and, you know, grow in consciousness. Like, I think they're the world we live in now doesn't leave room for a lot of growth. It's looking to to kind of get rid of people and people looking to be offended about everything every single day.

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All right.

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Now we're going to get you out of here. You've been very generous with your time. We appreciate it. Dan has decided to be super serious, too serious, very serious for our liking. There's so right it Michael, I just wanted to talk about UFOs. So on the way out here, they finally gave movies. I mean, Mike will go on about this. The UFO is finally came and no one noticed. And you come off as a guy who believes there are other lifeforms out there in other galaxies.

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HK No one noticed.

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I mean, my God, my experience is ridiculous. I mean, a tick tock gets a little bit more attention than the U.S. government admitting that UFOs are here. I mean Jodie Foster I think has three movies about this and the day came and went and it's not even Lester Holt doesn't even paid Whodini mind. Give us some of your thoughts, Aaron, on unidentified flying object. Isn't it ironic that the disclosure is finally happening and at the same time gets very little attention to no attention, you know, from Rosewell in 2007, I believe on down throughout the years, there's a great show called the Project Blue Book, which is based on true stories.

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It's Littlefinger from Game of Thrones, and they are working for the Navy, trying to, you know, take care of people's fears by lying about, you know, these alien sightings that went on during the late 40s, 50s and 60s. It is comical now that we've seen on. You can go online and look at these views from the from the Air Force videos of unidentified flying objects. And there's there's actually a conversation and many whistle blowers who've talked about working at secret underground bases and working reengineering and alien technology from from Krafts.

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You don't know what to believe necessarily, but I've always left left it open in my mind that that there is there is life out there. But again, you look at our society, are we ready to have full disclosure with that? Does it totally eliminate the, you know, the tenants of organized religion that doesn't leave space for anything that God didn't create? You know, I they should be. It is interesting time we're living. And I think it's it's a fabulous time to be living.

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And even though there's so much fear and an unsettling things in this world, I just think we're on the verge of of some really good change. If we can just keep choosing love over fear and really break down some of the systems that have been in place. I think there's been there's been a lot of that in the last calendar year. And I hope we keep keep growing as a society and trying to find ways to come together. Even the media, not your media, sports, media a lot of times, but big media often tries to kind of tell us how different we are in exchange for not asking you any Jordan love questions that ESPN can put on its air.

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Can you just say flatly, there is absolutely extraterrestrial life? I believe that. I'm Aaron Rodgers.

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I endorsed a version that I wasn't going to pepper you with some lovegood. Yes. No, no, no questions for him, but you got it. You got to give us the sound so ESPN can put on SportsCenter. Aaron Rodgers says there are absolutely aliens or some form thereof.

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I can probably say something a little more controversial than that. But look, I've said in the past, I went on the Nerdist podcast with Pete Holmes. I talked about my UFO sighting that I had. It got a little bit of a run, not a whole lot, which is fine. You know, I feel like in general, most people believe my story. They went to my friend whose house I was at. He backed me up and unsolicited.

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We had, you know, weird, weird thing we saw in the sky in New Jersey and, you know, in 2000, 2005, that was and that was interesting. It's funny. Now there's disclosure and you look in movies, movies, you know, imitate life. And there's you know, you said Jodie Foster. I can think of, you know, a few of the movies she was in and involved, involved aliens. I think you're going to see even more and more of that.

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I have a theory, Aaron.

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And just if you be an alien, by the way. Well, here's the thing. I think they've been here. I think we all know what aliens look like.

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Octopi, nothing like their genetic makeup is like nothing else on Earth. They're super intelligent. They can fit in super tiny holes and expand their bodies. They have eight arms.

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I'm telling you, I described Gronk Bronk is what I would argue. Gronk is an elite.

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I like to think about the when Will Smith kind of in Men in Black, when he gets initiated, you know, he's in the program now and he kind of goes in that room and he's asking who is aliens? And Dennis Rodman for sure. And then he talks about, you know, his fourth grade teacher, whatever. Yeah, I knew she was an alien. There's there's people in your life. You're like total alien. Total alien in one day, one day.

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Then there will be disclosure. Yeah. You'll be outed.

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Yeah, I'm going to be one of them. We will get you out of here. I just want to hear if you have a story in the last couple of years because you told us about that crazy Viking like actual Viking, not Minnesota Viking vandenbosch chasing you around and screaming, I'm going to get you. You've got to have another story from somebody being a crazy person on the field chasing you around and saying something stupid.

[00:33:21]

Oh, just some of my own teammates. Probably not that interesting. Then I don't got anything good for you to you got me into serious moody. I mean, talking about who knows what. I don't even remember what I said. I kind of blacked out for a little bit and I'm not even drinking scotch. There's no way I can tell you. I did.

[00:33:36]

I went to serious. I'm sorry that I didn't ask more funny questions, but thank you for giving us as much time as you did. We always appreciate your time. Thanks for. Being with us. All right, see you guys.