March 14 (UPI) -- The Arizona Cardinals have released All-Pro safety Tyrann Mathieu.
Arizona announced the move Wednesday afternoon. He was a third-round pick by the Cardinals in the 2013 NFL Draft.
"I've never made a secret that Tyrann has always had a special place in my heart and always will," said Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said in a news release from the NFC West franchise.
"While we all understand this a part of the business, that certainly doesn't make it any easier. We all wish Tyrann nothing but continued success in his career and beyond."
Mathieu, 25, had 74 tackles, seven passes defensed, two interceptions, a sack and a forced fumble in 16 starts last season for the Cardinals. The "Honey Badger" made the Pro Bowl and was named an All-Pro in 2015, after piling up 89 tackles, 17 passes defensed, five interceptions, a forced fumble, a sack and a touchdown in 14 starts.
"I'm ready for the new challenge! Ready to take my spot as top DB," Mathieu told NFL Network in a message on Wednesday. "Fresh starts are good!"
The Cardinals and Mathieu were involved in contract talks leading up to his release. About $18 million of his contract was set to become guaranteed this week. Mathieu was due $13.75 million in 2018, including a $5 million roster bonus due on Friday.