Aaron Rodgers will no longer appear on “The Pat McAfee Show” this NFL season and the ESPN host on Wednesday distanced himself from the lightning rod quarterback.
Rodgers had recently drew ire of comic Jimmy Kimmel after he appeared to suggest the late night host was going to appear in unsealed documents connected to accused pedophile and sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.
McAfee announced that the weekly segment “Aaron Rodgers Tuesday” was done for the season, and the host and his staff applauded.
But after the initial applause on Wednesday, McAfee explained that Rodgers had become too much of a distraction.
“The guy who stopped by yesterday caused quite a conversation,” McAfee said about Rodgers’ appearance on Tuesday.
As an off-camera voice chimed in “per usual,” an exasperated McAfee shot back: “Not like that.”
“So ‘Aaron Rodgers Tuesday,’ season 4 is done,” McAfee said before clapping. “There are going to be a lot of people that happy with that, myself included to be honest.”
He continued: “The way it ended, it got really loud, really loud. I’m happy that that is not going to be my mentions going forward which is great news.”
McAfee, who explained he has total control of his show’s creative content, appeared to say the blowback from Rodgers’ comments about Kimmel was turning into a problem and giving “ammo” to critics of “The Pat McAfee Show.”
“And over the last week, we have certainly given them all a lot of stuff to get mad about and become loud about. We’ve messed up in that particular aspect,” McAfee said.
“We live in country that has freedom of speech. But also you’re going to have deal with the consequences of your freedom of speech. So what I’m saying is we’ve given a lot of people who have been waiting for us to fail a lot of ammo in things to attack to us for over the last week.”
He praised Rodgers, a Super Bowl winner and four-time NFL MVP, but said he’s pleased to be moving on from him.
“We are very lucky to get a chance to chat with him and learn from him. Some of his thoughts and opinions, though, do piss off a lot of people,” McAfee said. “And I’m pumped that that is no longer going to be every single Wednesday of my life which it has been for the last few weeks.”
It wasn’t immediately clear if Rodgers was going to be permanently off “The Pat McAfee Show” or is just done for the rest of this football campaign.
ESPN spokesperson Julie McKay declined to elaborate on McAfee’s announcement.
“Pat addressed on the show,” she said. “We’re declining comment on the matter.”