Packers RB Johnathan Franklin seemed to suggest that his neck injury will end his NFL career.
— Johnathan Franklin (@JFrank2308) June 19, 2014
Packers HC Mike McCarthy told reporters on Thursday that former fourth-round pick RB Johnathan Franklin won’t be back with the tean.
“I have some unfortunate news about Johnathan Franklin,” McCarthy said, per Rob Demovsky. “Organization will address it tomorrow. He will not be back with us.”
Demovsky, citing two people with knowledge of the situation, reported Wednesday that the Packers are concerned Franklin’s neck injury could be career-threatening.
Green Bay was expected to put Franklin through additional tests to determine if it’s safe for him to continue playing, so it appears as though he received bad news.
This is horrible news for Green Bay, and Franklin in particular. The Packers are notorious for playing things safe when it comes to neck injuries, so there is still a chance he could continue his career with another team in the event he ends up being waived.
The second-year back out of UCLA was selected in the fourth-round in 2013, three rounds after Green Bay selected RB Eddie Lacy. The Packers likely envisioned Franklin as an ideal compliment to Lacy, who runs with a downhill style.
Franklin was set to compete with RB James Starks for the primary back-up position. He did see some time as a punt and kick returner as a rookie, so he could see the field on special teams as well.
Franklin registered 19 carries for 107 yards in eleven games played in 2013.