Keeping it lighthearted. Peyton Manning jokingly warned his 2022 CMA Awards cohost, Luke Bryan, not to rock the boat — especially after receiving some major side eye from Carrie Underwood last year.
“Carrie Underwood and I have a lot in common,” Manning, 46, said to Bryan, 46, during their opening monologue at the Wednesday, November 9, event. “We both work with Brad Paisley we’ve both been on Sunday Night Football a lot, and we’re both very nervous about what Luke Bryan might say tonight.”
As the crowd burst into laughter, Bryan replied, “Hell, even I’m nervous about what Luke Bryan might say tonight.”
The NFL star’s comments come after the November 2021 awards show, when the American Idol judge made a quip about Aaron Rodgers’ coronavirus anti-vaccine stance, which 39-year-old Underwood’s husband, Mike Fisher, openly supported.
“Whatever makes you country, you are welcome here tonight,” Bryan joked at the time. “Rest assured, we’re following all the health protocols to keep everyone safe, and it is so great to be here with all my fellow artists — tested and together,” he told the audience. “Or immunized? Who is it? Just playing.”
The camera then panned to Underwood, who didn’t laugh, instead giving the “Country Girl” singer a harsh glare.
In November 2021, Fisher, 42, made headlines when he took to social media to support Rodgers, 38, who faced criticism after testing positive for COVID-19. The quarterback alleged at the time that he “didn’t lie” about his vaccination status after claiming that he was “immunized,” and had found an “immunization protocol” to adhere to instead of getting vaccinated.
Fisher, for his part, revealed that he stood behind his friend’s beliefs.
“I believe in the freedom to choose what we put in our bodies and the freedom of conscience,” the former NHL star wrote via Instagram. “I agree with him in that the science clearly shows the vaccinated spread covid at basically the same rate as the unvaccinated. The @nhl @nfl and other leagues are ignoring the science and choosing to coerce and punish unvaccinated players with these restrictions. If they really cared about people’s health they would have daily testing for all.”
Fisher claimed that the past two years proved that the coronavirus “is not about our health, it’s about control over our lives” and he will not “stand for that.”
He concluded: “It’s time to fight for our medical freedom and I feel for those that have been fired for choosing medical freedom. People losing their jobs over a medical choice is un-American and unacceptable. We need to stand up now before it’s too late!! #medicalfreedom #istandwithaaronrodgers.”
The “Before He Cheats” songstress, meanwhile, “liked” Fisher’s post and the pair — who are parents of sons Isaiah, 6, and Jacob, 2 — attended the CMAs together that same month.
For access to all our exclusive celebrity videos and interviews – Subscribe on YouTube!