Aaron Rodgers has long been a friend and supporter of Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun, but the two aren’t quite so chummy after the events of the past week.
Braun, of course, was suspended 65 games for performance-enhancing drug use on Monday, less than two years after Rodgers said he would bet his entire salary that his fellow Wisconsin sports star was clean.
The Green Bay quarterback was asked about Braun’s suspension at Packers training camp on Friday, and he made no effort to hide his disappointment.
“Well, I was shocked, I really was, just like I know many of you were,” Rodgers told reporters. “I was backing up a friend, who looked me in the eye on multiple occasions and repeatedly denied these allegations, said they weren’t true. So it is disappointing, not only for myself as a friend but for obviously Wisconsin sports fans, Brewer fans, Major League Baseball fans. It doesn’t feel great being lied to like that, and I’m disappointed about the way it all went down.”
Rodgers said he has talked to Braun since the punishment came down, but he does know what their relationship will be like moving forward. Along with being arguably the state’s most high-profile athletes, the two also own a restaurant together, the 8-Twelve MVP Bar & Grill in Brookfield, Wis.
“That’s yet to be determined,” Rodgers said. “I don’t regret backing a friend up. Obviously, in hindsight, a more measured approach next time would obviously be a better course of action. People make mistakes. I definitely believe in forgiveness and moving forward. Obviously, he has a tough task in front of him moving forward with his career, on and off the field. As far as the business goes, right now I’m focused on football, and I have people who can help me work with those type of issues.”