Aaron Rodgers has outside interests but admits transition to life after football will be 'tough' as he talks retirement on 'The Pat McAfee Show'

Christopher Kuhagen
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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Aaron Rodgers has been synonymous with football for nearly two decades as the Green Bay Packers quarterback, but as he nears the end of his career — whenever that may be — he acknowledged it's not "all ball all the time" for him.

Remember, the soon-to-be 39-year-old seriously considered retirement after the 2020 season and wanted to be the full-time "Jeopardy!" host not too long ago after he served as a two-week guest host. This past offseason Rodgers was also a podcast regular as he made the rounds talking about his ayahuasca use.

"Of course, you think about life after football," Rodgers said Tuesday during his weekly appearance on "The Pat McAfee Show." "It's not like (I) turn it on at some points and turn it off. When you have interests outside the game there’s always things that come up that you spend time doing in some of your free time that you're going to do more when you're done playing. Of course, there's that thought."

After Rodgers won back-to-back MVP awards and led the Packers to the NFC’s top seed in the playoffs in 2020 and 2021, the organization has fallen short of expectations in 2022.

Rodgers and the Packers have lost six of seven games, have sunk to 4-7 and are tied for 11th in the NFC standings. Rodgers, nonetheless, said his focus remains on the season and the preparation that goes into the games.

“That doesn’t change,” said Rodgers, who has a 19:7 touchdown to interception ratio with a 93.2 quarterback rating through 11 weeks (only one other season has he finished with a lower QBR).

However, Rodgers added that his mind also goes to those other interests “from time to time.”

"And I look forward to those things," Rodgers said. "Those are not front of my mind. Those are near the back. But to sit here and say it's all ball all the time, and blah blah blah (expletive). That's not the way I am.

"There’s life after football and there's life outside of football even during the season," Rodgers continued. "It's important to keep that balance. You’re gung-ho, you’re all in, you’re all about finding ways to tweak little things to improve and to be more efficient, but you're also a person. You have a life."

Aaron Rodgers has no plans to get into coaching when he retires

So what does he see his life looking like after football?

"Definitely not coaching, I can tell you that," Rodgers said Tuesday. "I have no interest in being at the facility all day and guarding my desk."

While he has "zero interest" in following the lead of former players who have traded in the pads for the headset as a head coach, Rodgers admitted the "management side" would slightly pique his interest.

"It's a very tiny, tiny interest," Rodgers explained.

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers said he has no desire to get into coaching when his playing days are over but a managerial role would slightly pique his interest.

McAfee and AJ Hawk, Rodgers' former teammate and close friend who joins McAfee as a co-host, asked him if he could see himself getting into sports broadcasting, like Tom Brady is set to do after he signed a 10-year, $375 million deal with Fox this offseason.

Are there other options, Rodgers asked.

How about politics?

"You'd be great at that," Hawk told him.

The co-hosts joked that Rodgers could be a hippie or shaman. Rodgers, of course, has spoken out about his use of the psychedelic plant-based drug ayahuasca.

"Maybe a sherpa," Rodgers finally said.

Rodgers 'not looking forward to the end' whenever that comes

Despite Rodgers' extension last offseason that gave him the highest average salary in the NFL ($50 million for the first three years), Rodgers acknowledged he isn't sure how long he will play.

"It’s been an awesome run," said Rodgers, who is in his 18th NFL season and 15th as the Packers' starting quarterback. "I’m really proud of what I’ve accomplished. I'm not like looking forward to the end. Life after football is going to be a tough transition as it is for every player. I don’t know when that's going to be. I don't know if it's going to be after the season or after three more seasons. There will be decisions that we'll have later down the road."

The 2022 season continues for Rodgers and the Packers this week at the NFC-leading Philadelphia Eagles (9-1) on "Sunday Night Football."

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