Luke Bryan Pokes Fun at Aaron Rodgers Vaccine Drama in 2021 CMAs Opening Monologue
Bryan, the show's first solo host in 18 years, kicked off country music's biggest night with a few words, first taking aim at himself and his lack of wins over the years.
"Tonight is all about the music and the dreams. However, I know it's definitely not all about the nominations, 'cause I really don't have any," he joked. "It's fine, I'm not bitter. Nope, I'm not."
After drawing a laugh from the audience, Bryan then made a quick quip about Rodgers, who recently tested positive for COVID-19.
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"It is so great to be here with all my fellow artists, tested and together... or immunized?" he joked. "Just playin'."
Rodgers recently admitted he is not vaccinated against COVID-19 after previously saying that he had been "immunized" against the virus.
Rodgers was placed on the Packers' reserve/COVID-19 list last week, and later confirmed on the Pat McAfee Show that he had not actually gotten the vaccine.
During the interview, he argued that he hadn't lied about being immunized, and had taken ivermectin, a drug that's typically used to treat or prevent parasites in animals and has not been FDA authorized or approved.
After Bryan's quip, fans on social media were quick to point out the camera's focus on nominee Carrie Underwood, who some said appeared to give a "side-eye."
"Was it just me or…did you also catch @carrieunderwood's side-eye after @lukebryan said everyone was 'immunized' ….just me? Oh..okay..," one user wrote.
Underwood's husband, retired NHL player Mike Fisher, previously spoke out in support of Rodgers on Instagram, writing, "I stand with Aaron Rodgers" in a lengthy statement that his wife "liked" on the platform.
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"What are y'all doing here?" Bryan asked, to which Perry jokingly responded: "I thought we did everything together."
"We're here because we heard you needed a little help, because you're hosting the biggest country event ever," added Richie.
Richie, Perry and Bryan have judged the awards show together since its return (and change to ABC) in 2018.
The CMA Awards, hosted by Luke Bryan, are broadcasting live from Nashville on Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.