Rodgers Criticizes “Roughing the Passer” Calls, Discusses Knee Injury

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GREEN BAY, WI – SEPTEMBER 16: Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers throws a pass during the first quarter of a game against the Minnesota Vikings at Lambeau Field on September 16, 2018 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

How sore was Aaron Rodgers after the Packers-Vikings 29-29 tie on Sunday?

“If you’ve seen Rocky III you know that Mr. T, Clubber Lang, has a prediction before the fight. Pain! That’s kind of what it felt like,” Rodgers said Werdnesday.

Rodgers was also asked his take on the roughing the passer penally called against his teammate Clay Matthews Sunday, a play that could have changed the course of a game that finished as a 29-29 tie.

“We enjoy the protection below the knee and above the shoulders,” Rodgers said of the emphasis on protecting quarterback against “vicious” hits. “But I don’t know many quarterbacks that want those calls.”

Rodgers says he also didn’t agree with the roughing the passer penalty given to Vikings LB Eric Kendricks, who hit Rodgers in a similar manner to how Matthews hit Kirk Cousins.

“The one on me, I don’t think that’s roughing the passer either,” Rodgers said. “There’s a goal to limit these hits, but they’re pretty obvious when you seen them. A guy picking somebody up, and full weight on them. What do you say to Clay? His head is out of it, his hand is on the ground, that’s not roughing the passer. Same thing with Kendricks. What do you say to him on that? I didn’t get up off the ground thinking, where’s the penalty? I saw a late flag, and couldn’t believe there was a penalty on the play.”

Rodgers says he understands what the NFL is trying to accomplish with its recent rules adjustments, but isn’t a fan of some of them.

“I’m a traditionalist,” Rodgers said. “I’ve watched the game and loved the game for a long time. Some of the rules I think help, but some of the rules are maybe going the wrong direction. They’re trying to think about the progress of the game and the safety and stuff. But it’s still a collision sport. Those are not penalties on Clay or on Kendricks.”

And as far as his knee injury goes, Rodgers was asked if there’s any concern his knee may actually get worse instead of get better as the season goes on.

“Yeah, obviously that’s a concern,” Rodgers said. “Hopefully it goes the other way though.”

“I’ll just adjust accordingly to how I’m feeling and try to get through. It just depends on how the week goes with the rehab and the recovery. Obviously, I’d love to be better than I was last week as far as health-wise but there’s some factors that are out of my control.”

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