Aaron Rodgers says a Bleacher Report article that claimed he held a decade-plus-long grudge against former Packers head coach Mike McCarthy was nothing more than a "smear attack."
"This was a smear attack by a writer looking to advance his career talking with mostly irrelevant, bitter players who all have an agenda, whether they're advancing their own careers or just trying to stir old stuff up," Rodgers said Monday in an interview with ESPN Milwaukee radio.
"What happens is the same tired media folks picking it up and talking about it. This just emphasized their opinion about me already. So it's ... the crazy thing is there's super-slanted opinions in that piece stated as facts, and then there's quote-unquote facts which are just outright lies."
Former Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings, who hasn't been shy about calling Rodgers a selfish player in the past, was quoted in the story saying he could tell in 2013 when he was with the Vikings that Packers receivers were afraid to simply say hello to him in case Rodgers would become angry.
Jennings is also quoted as saying Rodgers once scolded him for talking to Brett Favre after Favre signed with the Vikings in 2009.
Rodgers continued: "If I really disliked Mike (McCarthy) so much, why would I re-sign knowing that if I play well and we do what we do around here – we made the playoffs eight straight years, and then I got hurt and we missed the playoffs – it's going to be me and Mike my entire career
" So if I really disliked him that much, do you think I'd re-sign? Is the money that important to me? I'll tell you it's not. Quality of life is important."
Rodgers did not explain why he thinks players quoted in the story, including Jennings and former star Packers running back Ryan Grant, are "mostly irrelevant" and "bitter."
The Packers had their first day of offseason workouts on Monday. The Vikings begin offseason workouts on April 15, followed by organized team activities (OTAs) May 21-23, May 28-30, and June 3-6.
Minnesota's mandatory minicamp is scheduled for June 11-13.