The Packers released AJ Hawk today and cleared $10.5 million off their payroll. The San Diego Chargers are in need of help at the linebacker position, both of their starting middle linebackers Stephen Cooper and Kevin Burnett are free agents. It seems that the Chargers first priority in the middle is to bring Kevin Burnett back and Stephen Cooper may have played his last game as a Bolt.
A.J. Hawk would be able to play one of the inside linebacker positions. The Packers ran a 3-4 defense last season during their championship run and Hawk could be a force in the middle.
If the Chargers do not go after Hawk, there are other options that the Chargers could look at. Takeo Spikes played under our defensive coordinator Greg Manusky last season in San Francisco and has flourished late in his career. He would add veteran leadership and would also be familiar with Manusky’s style of play.
Kirk Morrisonis also a good option in the middle. His numbers dipped a little with the Jacksonville Jaguars, but playing for a playoff contender could revive him. He has not been in the playoffs his whole NFL career. He would also be coming back to San Diego where he spent his college career with the SDSU Aztecs.
Knowing AJ Smith, we will probably look to fill any holes in our lineup through the draft or with lower tier free agents. I guess we will have to wait and see what AJ brings us next year (if we have a season).