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A.J. Hawk retires as a Packer

AP

A.J. Hawk announced his retirement three months ago, but now he’s doing so with the team that brought him into the league.

Hawk and the Packers have announced jointly that he’s retiring as a Packer. He played in Green Bay from 2006 to 2014 and then played one year in Cincinnati in 2015 and one game in Atlanta in 2016.

“We were fortunate to make A.J. my first pick as head coach in 2006, and he spent the next nine years giving everything he had to the Green Bay community and the Packers,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said in the team’s announcement. “His leadership and toughness were instrumental in all of our success, and we thank him for all that he did for the organization and the community. We wish A.J., Laura and the rest of the Hawk family all the best, and I am confident that whatever the future holds, he will be successful.”

Hawk was a first-round pick out of Ohio State who was a starter for all nine of his seasons with the Packers. He ranks first in franchise history with 1,118 tackles.

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38 Responses to “A.J. Hawk retires as a Packer”
  1. speicher145 says: Apr 18, 2017 11:33 AM

    My first jersey ever

  2. mnrasslinggovjesse says: Apr 18, 2017 11:35 AM

    Won’t ever be accused of being a great player, but he was smart and I never questioned his effort. Glad he got a SB ring.

  3. scoops1 says: Apr 18, 2017 11:36 AM

    I still will never understand why people call this guy a Bust. He came to work day and day out during his career and was very consistent.

  4. avikesfan says: Apr 18, 2017 11:37 AM

    So long rocky.

  5. tjacks7 says: Apr 18, 2017 11:41 AM

    Not what you’re looking for with a top 5 pick but given Ted’s atrocious draft record a solid starter is a miracle. Enjoy retirement, AJ.

  6. uncommon1 says: Apr 18, 2017 11:52 AM

    scoops1 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 11:36 AM
    I still will never understand why people call this guy a Bust. He came to work day and day out during his career and was very consistent.
    *********
    Agreed. He may not be headed to Canton, but he gave 9 years of hard work and he was (at a minimum) serviceable as a NFL linebacker. I know people want every 1st RD pick to be All-Pro, but in reality his career has to be considered successful.

  7. nfcbeastly says: Apr 18, 2017 11:55 AM

    So he wasn’t a bust, but he never lived up to the hype of being picked 5th overall. That being said he was a pretty consistent pro but not a game changer.

  8. singisking says: Apr 18, 2017 11:58 AM

    An LB that didn’t tackle particularly well, shed blocks, run or cover the TE. 9 years of mediocrity..

  9. ariani1985 says: Apr 18, 2017 12:08 PM

    I am going to miss watching AP drag A.J. into the Packers horrible secondary after yet another 10 yard gain!!!

  10. uncommon1 says: Apr 18, 2017 12:08 PM

    Some other players selected 5th overall since 2000:
    Mark Sanchez, Justin Blackmon, Glenn Dorsey, Levi Brown, Carnell Williams, Terrance Newman, Quentin Jammer, Jamal Lewis. I’d say Hawk is in line with a lot of these guys and better than several of them. Have to have realistic expectations

  11. aarons444 says: Apr 18, 2017 12:17 PM

    So he wasn’t a bust, but he never lived up to the hype of being picked 5th overall.
    —–

    If he played his entire career as a 4-3 strong-side ‘backer, I think he’s remembered alot differently.

    He was terrible in the 3-4, just never any made plays.

  12. JMClarkent says: Apr 18, 2017 12:21 PM

    uncommon1 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 12:08 PM
    Some other players selected 5th overall since 2000:
    Mark Sanchez, Justin Blackmon, Glenn Dorsey, Levi Brown, Carnell Williams, Terrance Newman, Quentin Jammer, Jamal Lewis. I’d say Hawk is in line with a lot of these guys and better than several of them. Have to have realistic expectations

    ————————————————————–

    Versus some of the guys you left off:

    Ezekiel Ansah, Patrick Peterson, Eric Berry, Sean Taylor, LaDainian Tomlinson…

  13. dawoger says: Apr 18, 2017 12:24 PM

    The only kooks claiming Hawk was a bust are the minisoda skoltrolls who watched their Barneys go 5-15 against the Pack teams Hawk was on.

  14. purpleguy says: Apr 18, 2017 12:24 PM

    Good guy, solid pro, and wouldn’t have had to deal with any of the “bust” crap had he been selected in the second round.

  15. osrude says: Apr 18, 2017 12:35 PM

    I remember watching him year after year, he very rarely failed to make a tackle when he should’ve.

    I also remember a few memories where I yelled at the screen “hell yeah, Hawk!” when he made an uncharacteristic great play.

    Those, sadly, are long forgotten. A HOFamer, no, probably not. But a good, steady player that DID actually contribute to numerous wins over nine years? Probably an unsung needed player on our way to a Lombardi?

    Oh, you betcha.

    (Had to throw in a Midwest stereotype)

  16. pancaketaco says: Apr 18, 2017 12:51 PM

    uncommon1 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 12:08 PM
    Some other players selected 5th overall since 2000:
    Mark Sanchez, Justin Blackmon, Glenn Dorsey, Levi Brown, Carnell Williams, Terrance Newman, Quentin Jammer, Jamal Lewis. I’d say Hawk is in line with a lot of these guys and better than several of them. Have to have realistic expectations

    ————————————————————–

    Tells me one thing…personal workouts, combine, months of draft analysis…waste of time.

  17. milkcan44 says: Apr 18, 2017 12:59 PM

    If you check the records, AP never did much against the defenses Hawk played on. Packers knew they couldn’t pass beyond 5-7 yards so they stacked the box on AP.

  18. mypercyhurts2 says: Apr 18, 2017 1:03 PM

    tjacks7 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 11:41 AM

    Not what you’re looking for with a top 5 pick but given Ted’s atrocious draft record a solid starter is a miracle. Enjoy retirement, AJ.
    ——————————–

    There has been worse drafting. Like skipping over Aaron Rodgers – twice.

  19. Bluestree says: Apr 18, 2017 1:06 PM

    The way to evaluate a first round pick’s career is in relation to that year’s draft class. Nothing else is relevant.

  20. alshonbrandontandem says: Apr 18, 2017 1:13 PM

    Best tackle he ever made was on the golf course when a fan asked him to tackle him. Typical 1st rd bust for GB.

  21. wafflestomp says: Apr 18, 2017 1:22 PM

    It’s great to see him come back and retire as a Green Bay Packer where he belongs.
    Classy player and individual.
    I enjoyed every minute of his career.

    I’ll echo the sentiments of other posters, though he was a lunch pail, serviceable pro, you’d expect more punch from a top 5 draft pick.
    Though it’s certainly not his fault where he was selected, he seemed to always have to carry that burden of expectations.

    Good luck to you, A.J.
    Enjoy and cherish your memories of being a Super Bowl Champion.
    So few players and franchises get to be so lucky.

  22. aarons444 says: Apr 18, 2017 1:27 PM

    But a good, steady player that DID actually contribute to numerous wins over nine years?
    ===

    What did he contribute? Tackles 5 yards down field? Getting dragged for 3 yards while trying to make a tackle?

    Watch elite 3-4s and how their LBs play. Hawk looked nothing like those guys who “contribute to numerous wins”

  23. aarons444 says: Apr 18, 2017 1:42 PM

    Not what you’re looking for with a top 5 pick but given Ted’s atrocious draft record a solid starter is a miracle.
    ===

    MVPs
    Alexander
    Rodgers

    All-Pros
    Hutchinson
    Collins
    CMIII
    Nelson
    Sitton
    Clinton-Dix
    Bak

    Pro Bowlers
    Marcus Trufant
    Ken Hamlin
    Josh Brown
    Jennings
    Raji
    Cobb
    Lacy
    Lang

  24. uncommon1 says: Apr 18, 2017 1:43 PM

    common1 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 12:08 PM
    Some other players selected 5th overall since 2000:
    Mark Sanchez, Justin Blackmon, Glenn Dorsey, Levi Brown, Carnell Williams, Terrance Newman, Quentin Jammer, Jamal Lewis. I’d say Hawk is in line with a lot of these guys and better than several of them. Have to have realistic expectations

    ————————————————————–

    Versus some of the guys you left off:

    Ezekiel Ansah, Patrick Peterson, Eric Berry, Sean Taylor, LaDainian Tomlinson…
    ***************
    You’re not really understanding my point. I’m trying to show that a 5th overall pick shouldn’t be automatically expected to be an All-Pro type player. I don’t care about Hawk. Don’t like him, really don’t like the Packers. I’m just looking at the situation objectively.

  25. patriots80 says: Apr 18, 2017 1:45 PM

    Much love from Buckeye Nation.

  26. emoney826 says: Apr 18, 2017 1:54 PM

    I know one thing…he has more super bowl rings than the entire history of the viking organization.

  27. bhuettl says: Apr 18, 2017 1:59 PM

    “ariani1985 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 12:08 PM
    I am going to miss watching AP drag A.J. into the Packers horrible secondary after yet another 10 yard gain!!!”

    OMG, that was so many years ago. Hawk has been to two other teams since leaving the Packers and AP hasn’t drug anyone since he drug his son behind the wood shed.

  28. aarons444 says: Apr 18, 2017 2:01 PM

    You’re not really understanding my point. I’m trying to show that a 5th overall pick shouldn’t be automatically expected to be an All-Pro type player
    ===

    You’re not going to be able to sell that. Least of all to Packers fans.

    Hawk was the only top-5 pick the team has made since the early 1990s. If they get a better player in 2006 @ #5 overall, do they get to the Super Bowl in 2007?… do they win back-to-back Titles in 2011.

    Hawk was just a guy. Every team should expect more than that at #5 overall, even out of a weak Draft class.

  29. stellarperformance says: Apr 18, 2017 2:21 PM

    Hawk was a valuable and smart player. He was not a first-round game-changer, but he was solid. He quarterbacked the defense and did a great job of it. Late in his career he took a pay cut commensurate with his statistics. How can you fault a player for doing that? They should all do it.

  30. conormacleod says: Apr 18, 2017 2:40 PM

    Bluestree says:
    Apr 18, 2017 1:06 PM

    The way to evaluate a first round pick’s career is in relation to that year’s draft class. Nothing else is relevant.
    ————-
    I would think in relation to the position he plays would be much more valuable. After all, he does play with guys that were drafted in different years, not just the year he was.

    If the 4th pick that year was an offensive linemen, and never started a game in the NFL, does that make AJ a great LB? No. It doesn’t. If a LB taken in round 3 that year has more career tackles than AJ, does that make AJ a bust? No again. Your comment makes absolutely no sense.

  31. uncommon1 says: Apr 18, 2017 2:51 PM

    You’re not really understanding my point. I’m trying to show that a 5th overall pick shouldn’t be automatically expected to be an All-Pro type player
    ===

    You’re not going to be able to sell that. Least of all to Packers fans.

    Hawk was the only top-5 pick the team has made since the early 1990s. If they get a better player in 2006 @ #5 overall, do they get to the Super Bowl in 2007?… do they win back-to-back Titles in 2011.

    Hawk was just a guy. Every team should expect more than that at #5 overall, even out of a weak Draft class.
    ***************
    Teams shouldnt have unreasonable expectations. He was a 9 year starter and he set the record for the most tackles in Franchise History. If you expect more than that, than you’re not paying attention to History. He compares very well with other 5th picks, better than some & worse the some.

  32. pkrlvr says: Apr 18, 2017 3:03 PM

    Not what you’re looking for with a top 5 pick but given Ted’s atrocious draft record a solid starter is a miracle. Enjoy retirement, AJ
    ——–
    Fan of a team that hasn’t won a playoff game since 09 says what!?!?

  33. icebowler says: Apr 18, 2017 3:36 PM

    In this injury marred sport, many say the most important ability is availability. Hawk gets a career “A” in that one category at least. I remember many games over the years where the Packers were down to the 4th or 5th option to play ILB along side of AJ.

  34. abcz805 says: Apr 18, 2017 4:59 PM

    milkcan44 says:
    Apr 18, 2017 12:59 PM

    If you check the records, AP never did much against the defenses Hawk played on. Packers knew they couldn’t pass beyond 5-7 yards so they stacked the box on AP.

    From 2007 to 2013 AP played 14 games against the Packers. 1648 yards, average of 118 a game and 5.45 a carry. I would not consider that not doing much.

  35. filthymcnasty3 says: Apr 18, 2017 5:50 PM

    AJ Hawk’s legacy as a champion is secure. He has a ring, and is forever an integral part of the most storied and successful franchise in NFL history – the 13 time World Champion Green Bay Packers.

  36. ariani1985 says: Apr 18, 2017 7:06 PM

    Does he still own his trailer in GB? Must be worth at least $5,000 by now!

  37. 400marios says: Apr 18, 2017 8:59 PM

    Hawk was nothing more, or less, than a solid and reliable player. There are much worse legacies to carry around in this sport. On alumni day he’ll always have some loud cheers…including mine.

  38. GenXJ says: Apr 18, 2017 11:14 PM

    His brother-in-law is retiring as a Brown.

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