A.J. Hawk has a line on Aaron Rodgers, but is being careful not to compromise their friendship.
Hawk, the former Packers linebacker and co-host of “The Pat McAfee Show” was cagey when McAfee implied that Hawk had spoken to Rodgers since the new Jets quarterback suffered a debilitating, season-ending Achilles injury just four offensive snaps into Monday night’s season opener against the Bills.
In his own unique way, McAfee asked Hawk he’s heard from Rodgers on whether the quarterback plans to retire or attempt to mount a comeback from the injury.
“I have not heard anything like that from Aaron Rodgers,” Hawk said, holding his cards close to the vest.
“My opinion is I think and I would hope that he’s gonna play next year.”
Rodgers and Hawk came to the Packers as first-round picks one year apart, in 2005 and 2006 respectively, and were together in the Green Bay locker room through 2014.
McAfee pressed Hawk for more details about his friend and former teammate: “Why don’t you do some journalism?”
“There’s journalism, there’s friends and there’s sources,” Hawk answered. “I’ve gotta figure out what’s what, right?”
Former Giants quarterback Eli Manning also appeared on McAfee’s show on Wednesday, and echoed some of the thoughts Hawk had about a potential Rodgers comeback.
“I would think the mindset would be that he is rehabbing to come back and play again,” Manning said. “This is not how he wants to go out. This not how he wants the second chance, in coming to the Jets, to end. I would expect him to work his tail off and come back and get healthy and see what he can do with this team.”
Rodgers appeared to back both Hawk’s and Manning’s sentiment on Wednesday afternoon, making his first public comments about his injury in an Instagram post.
“I’m completely heartbroken and moving through all of the emotions, but deeply touched and humbled by the support and love.” he wrote. “Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I begin the healing process today.
“The night is darkest before the dawn. And I shall rise yet again,”
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