“The pope isn’t speaking infallibly here.”
“This is just his opinion.”
The pope is the only person on planet earth Catholics regularly and pre-emptively declare can be completely ignored–even when he is surrounded by a battalion of experts–just so long as he is not speaking with absolute infallibility. Nobody treats their garage mechanic, investment banker, or doctor this way.
Prudence suggests that it is a good idea to listen to the pope on matters of prudence, even when he is not speaking infallibly.