Olin Kreutz, who has made the Pro Bowl at Center in the NFC six times in the past decade, has walked out on the New Orleans Saints. The reason he gave for leaving the team was that he had lost his passion to play the sport.

Kreutz skills had significantly diminished in the past couple seasons, and at 34 years of age, the Hawaii-native said he didn’t just want to be collecting a paycut.

Though Saints fans might point to Kreutz as one of the reasons Mark Ingram hasn’t been very effective this season, the former Pro Bowl Center walking out on the team has created a void which is going to be tough to fill. Reports indicate that Kreutz had not been participating in preparations for the week 7 encounter with the Indianapolis Colts.

Kreutz joined the team for the 2011 season after spending the beginning of his career as a member of the Chicago Bears. His tenure in the Windy City ended when he declined a one year contract offer worth $3M, and then reportedly signed a one year contract offer from the Saints worth up to $4M, a base salary of $2M with another $2M in incentives.

(Sources:
– http://www.saintsgab.com/2011/10/21/saints-captain-center-olin-kreutz-chooses-to-leave-team/
– http://espn.go.com/chicago/nfl/story/_/id/6819261/re-signing-olin-kreutz-vital-bears)