FRIDAY, 2:29pm: The Packers have officially waived Franklin, the team announced today in a press release.
THURSDAY, 2:56pm: Agent Kenny Zuckerman says Franklin will be cut by the Packers with a waived-injured designation, and that he and his client will talk to another group of doctors “just to get peace of mind” (Twitter link via Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com).
2:23pm: Packers head coach Mike McCarthy told reporters today, including Jason Wilde of ESPNWisconsin.com (Twitter links), that running back Johnathan Franklin won’t return to the team — a major neck injury will end Franklin’s Packers’ career. While Green Bay’s medical staff is notoriously strict about clearing players with neck injuries, it sounds as if the injury will force Franklin to retire from the NFL.
“Unfortunately this week I have been ruled out of returning for the 2014/15 season and returning to play in the NFL,” Franklin wrote today, on his Twitter account. “But I understand God knows what he is doing and for now he has another platform for me to step upon.”
As Wilde notes, McCarthy told the media today that Franklin’s status will be further addressed and clarified on Friday, so we’ll have to wait for an official announcement on whether the running back’s playing career is over. It certainly seems as if that’s the case though, which would be a devastating turn of events for the former UCLA rusher.
Franklin, 24, was selected in the fourth round of the 2013 draft by the Packers and ran well in limited action for Green Bay last season, piling up 107 rushing yards and a touchdown on just 19 carries.