John Kuhn Announces Retirement from NFL – Farewell, John

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John Kuhn

The Green Bay Packers front office has announced the intended retirement of FB John Kuhn. He will end his career with an average of 3.1 yds per carry. An impressive stat and something for him to be proud of.

Former fullback John Kuhn, who played nine seasons (2007-15) in Green Bay, has informed the club of his decision to retire with the Packers. The announcement was made Wednesday by General Manager Brian Gutekunst.

Kuhn originally started his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers as an undrafted free agent out of Shippensburg (Pa.) University, spending time on the Steelers’ practice squad (2005) and active roster (nine games played in 2006) before being claimed off waivers by the Packers in 2007. During his nine seasons with Green Bay, he played in 139 regular-season games with 32 starts as well as 15 postseason contests with five starts. Kuhn played in the second most regular-season games in team history among running backs/fullbacks behind only FB William Henderson (188).

“John was a terrific football player and tremendous teammate who contributed to many years of success for the Packers,” Gutekunst said. “He was a true professional whose work ethic and leadership set a great example both on the field and in the locker room. We want to thank John and his family for all they did for the Packers and in the community as well as wish them nothing but the best.”

For 12 seasons, John Kuhn made his living in the backfield for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints. His long run in the NFL was remarkable, particularly since he signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Steelers out of small Division II Shippensburg (PA) in April of 2005.

Although released by the Steelers before the season started, Kuhn was on the practice squad for the final five games of the season. Still a member of the practice squad half way through the 2006 season, Kuhn was on the active roster for the final nine games. Seeing minimal action, Kuhn rushed for 18 yards, caught a pass for 15 yards and had several tackles on special teams. The highlight of his 2006 calendar year was winning a Super Bowl ring in the Steelers triumph over the Seahawks.

Released by the Steelers on September 1, 2007, it took all of one day to find another job in the NFL. Signing with the Packers, Kuhn saw his most action of his young NFL career, seeing significant time on special teams in every game of the season. Although not carrying the ball, Kuhn played a key role as a blocking fullback. He did enough to be resigned as an exclusive rights free agent in March the following year.

Again appearing in all 16 games during the 2008 season, Kuhn started three and recorded his first NFL touchdown on October 12, scoring on a one-yard toss from Aaron Rodgers. Another milestone was reached later in the season against the Saints when Kuhn rushed for his first touchdown. As usual, Kuhn was a significant member of the special teams.

The following season, Kuhn started six games, recording modest statistics of 18 yards rush and 47 yards receiving on seven receptions. However, he found the end zone twice and had 11 special teams tackles. The 2010 season was Kuhn’s most productive in terms of rushing in his career. Earning a Pro Bowl appearance, Kuhn ran for 281 yards on 84 carries and scored a combined six touchdowns rushing and receiving.

A highlight of his career came in the post season that year, rushing for a touchdown and catching a pass for another. He joined Packers great James Lofton as the first Packer to accomplish that feat in 27 years.
Becoming of of the most reliable fullbacks in the league, Kuhn was recognized for his efforts in 2011 by starting fullback for the NFC in the Pro Bowl. In addition, he was second team All-Pro. While never posted high yardage totals, Kuhn always found a way to score, reaching pay dirt six times on only 45 touches for the season. Coming up big again in the post season, Kuhn scored in te NFC Divisional round against the Giants.

John Kuhn

Kuhn was named Pro Bowl alternate in 2012 and tied a career high 15 receptions. Rising to the occasion in the big game, Kuhn scored two touchdowns in the NFC Wild Card game against the Vikings. Again playing his best when the game mattered the most, Kuhn scored on a one-yard run in the wild card game against the 49ers the following season, marking the fifth straight season scoring a touchdown in the post season. Still at the top of his game in 2014 as nine-year veteran, Kuhn was named first team All-Pro fullback. Kuhn added six more rushing touchdowns on only 27 carries over the next two seasons, continuing his proficiency for finding the end zone.
After a long run with the Packers, the Saints signed Kuhn as a free agent in February 2017. He was subsequently released twice and signed to more times over the next seven months. Kuhn rushed once for two yards in two games before tearing his biceps at the end of September, ending his season.

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13 Comments on "John Kuhn Announces Retirement from NFL – Farewell, John"

  1. Thomas E Lind

    At first I was thinking wtf, this sounds almost like a eulogy,but in a way it is. An end to a selfless,do what you’re asked, and then some career. Hopefully he’ll be a coach in GB at some point.

  2. Stiggy

    As much as his run in to his offensive linemen for 1/2 a yard play drove me nuts (I blame mcribb) Kuhn proved his value to the franchise with one key block against the bears.

    He is the closest thing the packers had to a Patriots type player.. not the most talented.. but played to win..did his job.. and worked hard.

  3. Ferris

    3rd and 1, whole world knows what is coming, McCarthy on the sideline saying….this time it will fool them…I just know it…hand it to the fullback first man through…they will never know what hit them…..next play 4th and 1….repeat. I liked Kuhn…everyone did…first team All Pro….quick name another fullback in the league then not wearing a Green Bay jersey….. since they kept 3. Yeah I can’t name one either and so…All Pro. It was fun to yell Kuuuuuuuhhhhhhhnnnnnn though I guess. Plus the block on Peppers was great….however I do not remember it leading to a Super Bowl.

    • Cheese

      Right? Nothing against Kuhn, I’m sure he was a great leader to have in the locker room and on the field which is nothing to overlook, especially after having to deal with idiots like Marty Bennett, Quittin-Dix, and Damarius Randall. But making a first team all-pro for 85 yards and one touchdown the entire season is just silly.

      • PF4L

        Yea…he had a few moments in his career. But other than that….meh.

        I never really got the lovefest with him. But more power to him.

        Don’t be surprised if he goes in the Packers HOF. If he does, it’s because everyone seems to love the guy.

        • Cheese

          I know. I don’t want to shit on Kuhn because he did what he was asked to do. It’s not his fault that everyone became infatuated with him for doing next to nothing statistically. It’s not like he was running around telling people he was a highly successful fullback who went 1st team All-Pro.

          It’s as if Kuhn’s career is more fictitious folklore than anything else. What the power of a trendy crowd chant can do for you….

          • PF4L

            Yea, it doesn’t show up in the stats, but blocking isn’t over rated. Plus apparently the guy was pretty damn smart as far as knowing the offense like QB #1.

            But at the end of the day, although i don’t agree, i have no problem with him being inducted. They could do worse, better him than some one year wonders on this team.

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