Aaron Rodgers' Positive COVID Test Has Green Bay's NFC Top Seed in Jeopardy

Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus, which was announced Wednesday. Since Rodgers hasn't received a vaccination for the virus, he must quarantine for 10 days, per the NFL's protocol.

It will be tough for the Packers to win without the veteran signal caller, and the Packers face a tall task this week when they really need him. Green Bay travels to face the Kansas City Chiefs this Sunday afternoon for the Game of the Week on Fox.

The Packers lost their first game of the season, 38-3, to the New Orleans Saints but have won seven straight to hold the top spot in the NFC. They have matching 7-1 records with both the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams. If the playoffs began today, the Packers would get the No. 1 seed in the NFC because of their head-to-head win over the Cardinals, who handed the Rams their lone loss in 2021.

Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers watches action during the second half of a game against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on October 28, 2021 in Glendale, Arizona. Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Green Bay will host the Rams on Thanksgiving weekend this month, and the Rams will visit Arizona in December for an NFC West rematch. There will be losses by at least two teams, and the Packers probably could least afford to lose Rodgers before a trip to Kansas City, which desperately needs wins to get back into the playoffs after back-to-back AFC titles.

The Packers will start Jordan Love at quarterback this Sunday in Kansas City. The Packers in 2020 traded up to select Love out of Utah State late in the first round of that spring's NFL Draft. Ever since, there has been tension between Rodgers and the Packers front office over that choice. All Rodgers did was go and win the NFL's Most Valuable Player award in 2020—the third of his career—and take the Packers to the top NFC seed that season.

Green Bay eventually lost the NFC championship at home against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who eventually won the Super Bowl in their home stadium two weeks later in Tampa. The Buccaneers are on the outskirts of the top-tier NFC teams so far, but never too far away with Brady at the helm.

Aaron Rodgers this past offseason was reported to want a trade, hoping to part ways with Green Bay. Then the NFL declared that "unvaccinated" players would require more stringent testing and restrictions in team activities. Rodgers in August said he was "immunized" when asked if he had been vaccinated.

Meanwhile during the contentious Packers offseason, Rodgers was hardly ever seen for team activities, but he was a guest host of "Jeopardy!" as the show auditioned different celebrities to hopefully fill the big shoes of longtime host Alex Trebek, who lost his battle with cancer.

After Green Bay went winless in the preseason, the Packers got blown out by the Saints in the opening game this season, sending many to wondering if Rodgers was ready to play another snap with Green Bay. Since then, they've looked sharp. Now, they'll venture into at least one game without a quarantined Rodgers, maybe two games without him.

If the Packers only win their lone NFC North divisional games in the second half of the season, they would likely win their division with an 8-8 record. But a top seed would suit them better, and they would surely need Rodgers to get them there.