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Packers release LB Hawk

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The Green Bay Packers released veteran linebacker A.J. Hawk on Wednesday.

The Packers drafted Hawk in the first round in 2006 and he had spent his first nine seasons with them.

Hawk, 31, tallied 923 tackles, 19 sacks and nine interceptions with the Packers.

“A.J. is a consummate Packer and we are grateful for all that he has given and how he represented the organization over the past nine seasons,” general manager Ted Thompson said in a statement. “He was a durable and consistent contributor to our success, but more importantly, he is a great person and teammate. The Packers are grateful for all that he has done on the field and in the community.”

The move saves the team $3.5 million in salary cap space. Added to the $3.75 million the team saved by releasing linebacker Brad Jones last week, the Packers have an estimated $33 million under the cap as free agency approaches.

Among their key pending free agents are wide receiver Randall Cobb, cornerback Tramon Williams and right tackle Bryan Bulaga.

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