- Thearon W. Henderson/Getty
One of the many attributes that makes Aaron Rodgers one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks is his alleged photographic memory.
ESPN’s Kevin Seifert decided to put it to the test by prompting Rodgers with basic descriptions of plays during his career, then asking him to fill in the rest.
Seifert published the most noteworthy responses, and while Rodgers’ ability to recall random plays in NFL games is impressive, the standout is his memory of a high school game – 14 years ago!
Seifert asked Rodgers about a scramble he made in a high school all-star game in 2002. Rodgers went off, recalling his physical status at the time, the defensive coverage, and how the play broke down.
“It was a third-and-10, and they brought six [rushers]. They brought both [outside] guys. We had four receivers, so we didn’t have it picked up. I just kind of dropped back. Since they brought six, it was man-to-man on the outside. The middle came open. I dashed up the middle, cut to my left, made a guy miss, got a couple blocks and ended up scoring in the left end zone.
“The reason that play is so meaningful to me is that it was the first game that I played in two years without a knee brace on. I hurt my knee in high school, and I wanted to take off my brace to see if I’d built up my knee enough to protect my ACL that I had hurt in my sophomore year in high school. That play meant a lot to me.”
This appears to be the play Rodgers is describing, based on a video embedded in Seifert’s story.
Rodgers’ ability to remember such plays calls into question what he told Bill Simmons during an interview on “Any Given Wednesday.” When Simmons asked Rodgers about his photographic memory, Rodgers seemed mum.
“I don’t know how to say that truthfully because I’d get tested and probably wouldn’t remember something,” Rodgers said when Simmons asked if it was true. When Simmons then asked him about a random play, Rodgers hemmed and hawed and said, “I mean that’s tough… I don’t know.”
Was Rodgers being coy, or perhaps he really doesn’t remember every play?
Regardless, Rodgers clearly possesses a memory greater than most humans, let alone most athletes. If he can perfectly break down a 35-yard scramble from high school, he probably has an immense archive of plays from his NFL career, too.