Neck injury ends Franklin's NFL career

Weston Hodkiewicz
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Green Bay Packers running back Johnathan Franklin carries the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals during a game at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati last September.

Green Bay Packers running back Johnathan Franklin will not return to the team, coach Mike McCarthy said Friday. A neck injury has ended his NFL career.

McCarthy spoke to the media after the final day of minicamp. Here are some highlights:

♦ I have some unfortunate news about (running back) Johnathan Franklin. The organization will address this tomorrow. All the information has come in (on his neck injury). He will not be back with us. I can't say enough about him as a person. I don't know. He's as classy as anyone who's walked through these doors. His situation will be addressed tomorrow.

(About a half-hour after McCarthy spoke, Franklin tweeted this: "Unfortunately this week I have been ruled out of returning for the 2014/15 season and returning to play in the NFL. But I understand God knows what he is doing and for now he has another platform for me to step upon.")

♦ I would say (cornerback) Micah Hyde looks very comfortable as far as the different responsibilities he's been asked to do back at safety and being able to move around. I thought Micah did a heck of a job this offseason.

♦ I think if you ask our players who have been here, particularly on defense, our quality of work has improved. We realize when you get back for training camp it's a whole different tempo. Mentally, we don't wait for anyone so commitment and focus was to get mentally ready for what's in front of us.

♦ I think when you look at your football team and how we've scheduled them and how they've been trained. When you look at the challenges of what a nine week program puts on your team, a stress point is your younger players. Group dynamics is part of growing culture. I believed that. That's why we do the group dynamic activity. Today's practice is actually what we look for. Scott Tolzien got a lot better today. I knew that when I walked off the field.

♦ I think it's important for our players to get away. I think sometimes we forget the stress of being a professional athlete.

♦ I think all of our players coming off injury. You want to get back out there. It's a progression because he hasn't been on the field since last training camp. (Right tackle) Bryan (Bulaga) has done a lot of nice things. He's bigger and stronger. Bryan is so consistent, hard worker. Ultimate pro. I thought he had a very good offseason.

♦ I thought (rookie tight end) Richard Rodgers was very productive.

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