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Josh Hawkins released by Panthers days after dancing at restaurant without mask

Larry Brown Sports logo Larry Brown Sports 10/27/2020 Larry Brown Sports
a group of people racing each other on a field: Josh Hawkins played college ball at East Carolina and originally signed with Green Bay as an undrafted free agent. © Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire Josh Hawkins played college ball at East Carolina and originally signed with Green Bay as an undrafted free agent.

The Carolina Panthers released practice-squad cornerback Josh Hawkins on Monday, and some are wondering whether a social media video had anything to do with the decision.

Video was posted on Instagram over the weekend showing Hawkins dancing to a Soulja Boy song. Hawkins was in a crowded restaurant. The Instagram video tagged the location as Nikko Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar in Charlotte, N.C.

a group of people racing each other on a field: Josh Hawkins played college ball at East Carolina and originally signed with Green Bay as an undrafted free agent. © Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire Josh Hawkins played college ball at East Carolina and originally signed with Green Bay as an undrafted free agent.

Hawkins was dancing around without any facial covering. Hawkins was violating two NFL COVID rules — one for attending an indoor event with a crowd of more than 10 people, and for not wearing a mask.


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Panthers head coach Matt Rhule only said that Hawkins was released because the move was in the “best interest of the team.”

Hawkins, 27, played college ball at East Carolina and originally signed with Green Bay as an undrafted free agent. He played in 26 career games with the Packers and has mostly spent time on various practice squads since.

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