Former RB Franklin visits Packers practice

Weston Hodkiewicz
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Former Green Bay Packers running back Johnathan Franklin watches training camp practice at Ray Nitschke Field, Monday, July 28, 2014. H. Marc Larson/Press-Gazette Media

It didn't take long for many Packers players and coaches to notice Johnathan Franklin standing on the sidelines during Monday's first padded practice of training camp.

Franklin, a fourth-round pick in last year's draft, was released last month after team doctors decided it wasn't safe for him to continue his football career due to a neck injury sustained on the opening kickoff against Minnesota in November.

Franklin, 24, rushed for only 107 yards and a touchdown in 11 games his rookie season, but was popular in the locker room. Running back Eddie Lacy, position coach Sam Gash, and receivers Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson all took time out from practice to chat with Franklin and see how he was doing.

Although the Packers said Franklin was not available to reporters, coach Mike McCarthy said after practice he's hopeful to bring the former UCLA standout on in a non-football capacity.

"He's as fine as a young man that's every walked through these doors in my time here," McCarthy said. "It's great to have him back."

Extra points

-Right guard T.J. Lang continues to make progress with his injured shoulder. Although Don Barclay took most of the first-team reps, Lang took one snap with the starters in the blitz period and the final rep of one-on-one drills against Josh Boyd.

He expects to return to full participation on either Wednesday or Thursday.

"There's just times you need to take a step back and get back on the right track and get healthy, and that's something I'm doing right now," Lang said.

Backup guard Lane Taylor also received some first-team reps with veteran Josh Sitton sitting out of a handful of plays. Taylor played in 10 games as a rookie, seeing 14 offensive snaps and another 47 on special teams.

"It's another chance to get some more reps," Taylor said. "Really this time of the year you can't get enough reps to get in there and try to get better, and fix things. Every single rep counts."

-Defensive lineman Letroy Guion sustained a hamstring injury about a week before reporting for camp, which led to his failed physical and placement on the non-football injury list.

"I probably pushed it a little too hard. It's unfortunate," said Guion, who played for Minnesota last season. "I'm coming back. I'm getting ready. I'll be out there and everybody will see what I got."

Rookie receiver Jeff Janis attended practice for the first time during camp, but has yet to return from the non-football illness list.

Injury report

Still out: OLB Mike Neal (abdomen), OLB Nick Perry (knee/foot), WR Jeff Janis (illness), DL Jerel Worthy (back), DL Letroy Guion (hamstring), ILB Jamari Lattimore (stomach illness).

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