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Neck injury jeopardizes Richardson's career

Jul. 26, 2013
 
Green Bay Packers safety Sean Richardson during last year's training camp. File/Press-Gazette Media
Green Bay Packers safety Sean Richardson during last year's training camp. File/Press-Gazette Media

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A little more than a year after the Green Bay Packers refused to clear Pro Bowl safety Nick Collins following his neck injury, the team could be in the same position with another defensive back.

Second-year safety Sean Richardson, who made the team as an undrafted free agent last summer, hasn’t been cleared to return following cervical fusion surgery in January that was necessary after he sustained a neck injury in Week 12 last season against the New York Giants.

“There were some tests that needed to be done here in the last couple of days,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Friday. “We’re gathering information and hopefully we’re getting close to a decision with Sean.”

Richardson said he feels fine but understands why the Packers are taking a cautious approach.

“I’ve got a long life to live, and they don’t want to put me back out there and have something happen like I get paralyzed or something like that,” Richardson said. “So we’re going through all the tests and different opinions from everybody’s perspective, and we’re just going to go from there.”

Richardson said he has met with several doctors but a second surgery has not been discussed. While he is optimistic he can play again, he said he is willing to accept whatever the doctors recommend.

“It’s their decision to clear me or not,” he said. “If I’m not cleared, I’ll go on to the next step and move on in life. I’m not looking at it that way, but you’ve got to look at it from both perspectives.”

The Packers released Collins in April 2012 after he sustained a neck injury in Week 2 of the 2011 season that required fusion surgery.

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