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Aaron Rodgers smiles for the camera while standing in front of a dark background.

Aaron Rodgers Talks Taking Over ‘Jeopardy!’ Hosting Role

Instagram | aaronrodgers12
By Kristin Myers

Ever since host Alex Trebek left the “Jeopardy!” stage, fans have been left wondering who is going to take on the hosting gig on a permanent basis.

Journalist Katie Couric and talk show host Dr. Mehmet Oz proved to be controversial picks, while former winner Ken Jennings and executive producer Mike Richards seemed to be widely accepted by fans.

The next temporary “Jeopardy!” host to take the position from April 5-16 is a less controversial pick of NFL star Aaron Rodgers.

'Jeopardy!' Background

Aaron Rodgers smiles as he holds up a green Packers jersey with the number "1" on it.
Instagram | aaronrodgers12

Although a star athlete might seem like an odd choice to host a trivia game show, the Green Bay Packers quarterback was actually a winning “Celebrity Jeopardy!” contestant back in 2015.

“The show has been so special to me over the years,” Rodgers shared when his hosting slot was first announced.

“It's been a staple at my house here in Green Bay for the last 16 years — 6 o'clock, watching Alex and trying to get as many questions as I can. When the opportunity came up in 2015, that was a dream come true. It really was. To be on there, to get to meet Alex was just such a special moment. We're all obviously sad about his passing.”

Preparing for the Role

Rodgers wears a red jersey with the number "12" on the back while he puts his hand on the back of another football player from another team.
Instagram | aaronrodgers12

Rodgers, who is no stranger to the phrase “practice makes perfect,” decided to study up for his role before taking to the “Jeopardy!” stage to film.

“I watched hours and hours and hours of episodes,” Rodgers explained in a recent interview. “Luckily Netflix has a few seasons, and I went back to DVR. But I had to watch from a different perspective -- from Alex's perspective. I couldn't watch it as a fan anymore.”

He continued, “I took pages and pages and pages of notes. I wrote down every affirmative that he said to any type of clue. I wrote down how he would respond if they didn't get it right. I wrote down beat points of the show. I wrote down all the different ways he would take it to break. I wrote down the stuff that he said coming out of the break. Literally, I studied for this like no other. I wanted to absolutely just crush it.”

A Good Impression

Aaron Rodgers stands on a football field with his arms crossed over his chest, not smiling.
Instagram | aaronrodgers12

Although fans have yet to see how Rodgers, 37, is going to perform as host, he teased a “viral moment” in the show’s first episode. How gif-worthy a moment this is remains to be seen, but he seems to have already wowed the producers.

“I know they didn't expect what I was about to bring, but I was just so prepared,” Rodgers shared. “I was so ready. So we get into the first game, the first run-through, there's 30 questions in a Jeopardy round, and after the first 15 questions, we go to break. They say it in your earpiece, 'Take it to break.' So I take it to break, and there was a pause, and I think everyone was like, 'Whoa, OK, this guy kind of knows what he's doing here.'”

He added, “One of the head producers said as much. She was like, 'I'm just so appreciative of your approach.' And my whole thing was I felt like the best way to honor Alex's memory was to be so dialed in and so ready, and that's the approach I took. So I was ready to rock and roll.”

Personal Life

Shailene Woodley stands on the edge of a boat wearing a "Protect the Oceans" blue shirt.
Instagram | shailenewoodley

Rodgers’ name has made headlines recently for his recent surprise engagement to actress Shailene Woodley. Woodley, 29, is an American actress best known for her roles in young adult films like the dystopian “Divergent” trilogy and the John Green hit, “The Fault in Our Stars.”

Although they met amidst the pandemic, the couple had kept their relationship private until Rodgers’ speech accepting the 2020 MVP award in February, stating, “I got engaged, and I played some of the best football of my career.”

“We are engaged,” Woodley confirmed in a recent interview. “But for us, it’s not new news, you know, so it’s kind of funny. Everybody right now is freaking out over it and we’re like ‘Yeah, we’ve been engaged for a while.”

Although Rodgers may be best known for his talent on the field, his fiancée doesn’t “know him as a football guy,” stating, “I know him as, like, the nerd who wants to host Jeopardy!. That’s the dude I know. He just happens to also be very good at sports.”

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