Andrew Hawkins, we hardly knew ye. The wide receiver announced in a video posted on Twitter that he is retiring from the NFL, one day before veterans are supposed to report to Patriots training camp.
“After OTAs and through the summer training, my body just wasn’t responding and didn’t feel the way that it should going into camp,” said Hawkins.
Hawkins, 31, played 74 games over six seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals and the Cleveland Browns. He finishes his career with 209 receptions and nine touchdowns.
Hawkins likely would have only made the team if Julian Edelman or Danny Amendola were injured in training camp, Ben Volin wrote last month. Additionally, Brandin Cooks, Chris Hogan, and Malcolm Mitchell all appeared to be ahead of Hawkins entering camp. He said he turned down more money elsewhere to sign with the Patriots for the veteran minimum $775,000 salary. He was scheduled to make $1.8 million with the Browns before they released him this offseason.
His departure could leave a narrow opening for Austin Carr, DeAndrew White, Cody Hollister, or Devin Lucien, although all are long shots, with perhaps one landing on the practice squad.
Hawkins also announced Tuesday that he will donate his brain after his death to the Concussion Legacy Foundation for research into chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Earlier Tuesday, a study by Boston University researchers provided new details on the effects of CTE in football players.
Follow Andrew Mahoney on Twitter @GlobeMahoney