Pierce's 2009 season ended early with a trip to the injured reserve list on Nov. 30 with a bulging desk in his neck.
A defensive captain, the 31-year-old led the team in tackles in three of the five seasons he was with the club.
He was also involved in the infamous Plaxico Burress case after accompanying the wide receiver to a nightclub the night he accidentally shot himself. Pierce testified to a grand jury that he'd driven Burress to the hospital after the incident.
"I appreciate everything the Giants organization has done for me," Pierce said after his release hit the news. "I told both Tom Coughlin and Jerry Reese when I sat in front of them that I have no animosity, I have no anger. It's nowhere near that kind of situation. You might not agree with everything that's said, but you understand how the game is. It comes and goes."