Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, responding to a rumor that he was boyfriends with his personal assistant, told a radio station today that he is not gay. From Pro Football Talk:
On Tuesday, Rodgers tackled the topic during his weekly appearance on ESPN Milwaukee. We know this because one of the ESPN Milwaukee on-air hosts sent us an email with a partial transcript of Rodgers' comments.
"I'm not gay," Rodgers said. "I really, really like women. That's all I can say about that."
The question came up in the context of Rodgers talking about some of the "crazy rumors" about him. The host then asked if he meant the gay rumors and that's when he made the comment.
Here is the radio clip (thanks to Deadspin):
Over the weekend, the gossip website Fame Driven published a letter from an anonymous tipster saying that Rodgers had broken up with his personal assistant and roommate Kevin Lanflisi. The evidence was all circumstantial and included tweets from Lanflisi and photos of him wearing Rodgers' Super Bowl MVP ring. Lanflisi never said he and Rodgers were boyfriends and until today Rodgers had never said anything.
The story had gotten big enough for a radio host to ask Rodgers -- good for him -- and for Rodgers to issue his response. Outsports was very aware of the rumors, but had chosen not to address it since neither party had confirmed it. We always wrestle with how to cover such stories since we obviously don't think there's anything wrong with someone being gay. But we also think it's appropriate for a person to come out when and how they choose.
I'll leave the last word to former Packer Esera Tuaolo, himself gay,who wrote this on Facebook prior to Rodgers' statement:
THE WITCH HUNT!!!!!
I for one can imagine what Aaron Rogers is going through because it was my life for 9 years in the NFL. The fear and pressure of someone outing me was killing!
I'm not sure if Aaron is gay or not but if he is, he will come out when he is ready. Why is there such a need for people to want to destroy someone personal life? Why is there such a need in these times to have a pro player come out? When he does, then what? Will it put us over the hump? Will you be able to sleep at night? Will you have a chance to date him? It's crazy and sad reading all the articles and how it's affecting his family and friends. It seems to me like an old school "Witch Hunt"!! Leave him Alone! The more you pressure him the deeper he will go into the closet.
I understand the obvious reasons why it would be amazing for Aaron Roger to come out. If he is, then let him do it on his terms. Because I'm sure if does come out later, the focus will be on why did you denied about being gay? People need to back off and leave him alone. There that's my 2 cents in the matter.
Aaron Roger I will pray for you and your family. If you are a part of the LGBT community, welcome home. We will support you and love you as a brother.
From Packer brother to another: