Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers bowed out of the playoffs over the weekend with a crushing, last-second loss at home to the San Francisco 49ers. The defeat brought a bizarre 2021 campaign to an end for a reigning MVP and reignited speculation about what his future will be.
The Packers untimely loss also led Stephen A. Smith to re-evaluate his opinion on Rodgers.
On the latest episode of First Take, the ESPN personality blasted the three-time MVP for coming up short again in the playoffs. He called this most recent collapse a "legacy-defining" loss for the Packers quarterback.
"It was the worse loss of Aaron Rodgers' career. The 'Bad Man' no longer applies," Smith
That ‘Bad Man’ no longer applies! pic.twitter.com/cG4tCGTkIW
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) January 24, 2022
">said Monday. "It's just one game in a lot of people's eyes. Not mine."
The ESPN host continued, recalling Rodgers' abysmal record against the 49ers in the postseason. The Packers quarterback fell to 0-4 in the playoffs against San Francisco, with this latest loss coming on his own home turf.
"I don't give a damn what the weather was. I don't give a damn if it was so foggy, like it was in Chicago years ago that you can't see two feet in front of you. You can't lose that game," Smith added. "... You're Aaron Rodgers. You're with Matt LaFleur. And you can't score more than 10 points at Lambeau Field? In snowy conditions you're very familiar with?"
"It is the worst defeat of Aaron Rodgers' career and it could not have come at a worse time because of all that noise that you made coming into the season. And then the noise that you made by being the 'deliberate-liar-in-chief' with the whole immunization and all of that stuff... We threw all of that aside and said 'This is your time.' And you came up short."
"He could be handed the league MVP award and no one gives a damn."
Rodgers fell to 11-10 all-time in the playoffs after this weekend's loss, extending his Super Bowl drought to over a decade.
With the 2021 season now freshly in the rearview, eyes will remain on Rodgers to see his next move. The 38-year-old may have already played his last game in Green Bay and could have his sights set on playing elsewhere in 2022.
Regardless of where Rodgers suits up next year, this most recent loss will hang over him for some time.