Aaron Rodgers continues to nurse a mysterious toe injury, one that he describes as "very painful."
Rodgers developed a strange toe injury during a 10-day quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19. Some suspected perhaps Rodgers simply dropped a hammer on this toe during his daily book reads. Well, at least I did.
However, Rodgers told Pat McAfee this week that he's suffering from "COVID Toe."
"No lingering effects, other than the COVID Toe," Rodgers said Tuesday.
At the time, it seemed that Rodgers was either joking or trolling. Yet the Wall Street Journal -- one of the only credible news outlets left -- took the claim seriously, revealing the dangers of COVID Toe:
According to the Journal, COVID Toe is a casual name for "something medically known as pernio or chilblains, which is a condition that causes symptoms such as discoloration and lesions."
COVID Toe can be painful and turn toes -- oh no -- purple.
"Recent research, including an October study published in the British Journal of Dermatology, has found that Covid Toes typically occur in younger patients who experience mild symptoms," the report goes on. "The problem is that, when the body produces too much of a type of interferon, it can create other problems—and produce Covid Toes."
"The way I would think about it is it's basically a side effect of how your own immune system is fighting the virus," said Esther Freeman, a doctor and principal investigator for the COVID-19 Dermatology Registry. "It's part of our body's response to the response to the virus. It's almost too much of a good thing."
Freeman says the condition tends to manifest one to four weeks after infection, which matches Rodgers' symptom profile. Remember, news that Rodgers tested positive emerged on November 3, and the Packers added Rodgers to the injury report for a toe injury on November 14.
COVID Toe flares up in cold weather, which hardly sounds positive for a QB who plays in Green Bay, Wisconsin -- if Rodgers actually has it. Temperatures in Green Bay could drop to 20 degrees when the Packers host the Rams on Sunday.
Who will be the first to say that COVID Toe is a grave danger to society? Could you put me down for ESPN's Keyshawn Johnson, please?
Nevertheless, we wish the best to anyone suffering greatly from this condition. The BBC released an image to warn people about it, and from the looks of it, turf toe's got nothin' on COVID Toe.
Pray for Aaron Rodgers' podiatrist that Rodgers was joking.
UPDATE: He was.