As we go forward to Super Bowl week, it brings up memories of two seasons ago when the Green Bay Packers were hoisting the Lombardi trophy. One player who really stood out during the Super Bowl run was linebacker AJ Hawk. Since then Hawk’s skills have diminished greatly. It was due to his play in 2010 that made Ted Thompson cut Hawk, and bring him back for a more reasonable contract price. That reasonable contract has become too much based on Hawk’s play.
In 2011, Hawk was given the chance to be one of the top linebackers in the Packers 3-4 defensive scheme. He failed in doing so as he gave up big plays, and missed many tackles. He’s been an average player at best for the Packers. He hasn’t lived up to the hype of being the 5th overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft. One of the most disturbing stats is that Hawk hasn’t been involved in a turnover play since 2010. That’s an uncommon trait for star middle linebackers. Ted Thompson drafted Hawk thinking he could be the next Brian Urlacher or Ray Lewis. Unfortunately this won’t happen.
Hawk is due to make a roster bonus next season, and this could be a blow against the Packers salary cap. With big name contracts like Clay Matthews, BJ Raji and Aaron Rodgers looming, the Packers will probably have to get rid of Hawk. It would make sense, because DJ Smith has filled in very well for Hawk when needed during the past two seasons. The Packers will probably be cleaning house this whole off-season Greg Jennings, Jeff Saturday, Donald Driver, and now Hawk most likely won’t be apart of the 2013 Packers.
Regardless of what Hawk does after he moves on, I believe he’s going to be labeled as a bust by many. It’ll be interesting to watch him play wherever his next destination is.
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