The King of the Hail Mary is answering prayers in Northern California ... Aaron Rodgers just donated $1 MILLION to help struggling small businesses in the area where he grew up.

80 restaurants and retail businesses in Butte County, CA -- including Chico (Aaron's hometown) -- will receive funds from Aaron's massive 7-figure donation to help cover rent and other operating costs.

The goal is to float the businesses for the next 3 months -- and maybe even longer -- while the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage on.