After Brewers superstar Ryan Braun admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs and accepted a 65-game suspension from Major League Baseball, lots of folks pointed back to comments made by Aaron Rodgers following Braun's previous erroneous exoneration.
Rodgers initially defended Braun and then later offered to bet his entire yearly salary that Braun was innocent of any wrongdoing. The Packers quarterback is now, quite understandably, not happy about "being lied to."
"It doesn't feel great being lied to like that and I'm disappointed about the way it all went down," Rodgers said via Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. "He looked me in the eye on multiple occasions and repeatedly denied these allegations and said they were not true."
Braun did this to a lot of people, and as I posited on Twitter earlier this week, it's entirely likely that Rodgers is furious about Braun telling him one thing and doing another. Braun lied to an entire fanbase and, really, the whole country. Everyone's pretty cheesed off, but it's even worse when it's someone who you're friends with and you went to bat publicly for them.
But Rodgers, who also said he was "disappointed" with his friend, doesn't necessarily regret that so much as he does the way in which he got Braun's back, although he's unsure if they can continue as business partners now.
"That's yet to be determined," Rodgers said. "I don't regret backing a friend up. Obviously, in hindsight, a more measured approach would obviously be a better course of action. I definitely believe in forgiveness and moving forward.
"He has a tough task in front of him moving forward with his career, on and off the field."
Indeed he does. Braun made the biggest mistake an athlete involved with performance-enhancing drugs can make: He lied about it. Admitting what you did wrong, taking the punishment straight up and moving on has proven to provide MLB players a second chance with just about everyone, including fans and the media.
Instead Braun lied to everyone and has quickly turned himself into one of baseball's more loathed athletes. It may end up costing him at least one friendship as well.