Green Bay cut A.J. Hawk after nine years of service

The Green Bay Packers announced they have cut linebacker A.J. Hawk after 9 years of being at the club.  Cutting the Hawk saves the Packers $3.5 million on the salary cap.

The 31-year-old has not played well in recent seasons. His struggles were one of a plethora of reasons Green Bay moved Clay Matthews inside. Hawk is currently recovering from surgery to remove bone spurs in his ankle.

“I had awesome teammates and coaches and a great medical staff and equipment staff. Many of them have become my closest friends. We won a ton of games, as well as a Super Bowl, and I loved everything about playing for one of the greatest franchises in all of sports.

“The fans in Green Bay are incredible. Between playing at Lambeau Field as well as seeing them on the road, they always supported us. I am looking forward to my next opportunity in the NFL, but I’ll always cherish my years as a Green Bay Packer.”

The Packers will focus on the inside backer position in free agency and through the NFL draft. The release of two inside linebackers indicates that Matthews should play inside even more next year, despite coach Mike McCarthy’s proclamation that he’s best on the outside. Green Bay clearly wasn’t going to enter 2015 with the same core that faltered last season.