The Green Bay Packers have released RB Johnathan Franklin. The transaction was announced Friday by Executive Vice President, General Manager and Director of Football Operations Ted Thompson.
Franklin, a second-year player out of UCLA, was drafted by Green Bay with the third of three picks in the fourth round (No. 125 overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft. He played in the first 11 games before seeing his rookie season cut short in Week 12 vs. Minnesota when he suffered a neck injury on his return of the opening kickoff of the game.
For the season, Franklin rushed for 107 yards on 19 carries (5.6 avg.) with one touchdown, caught four passes for 30 yards (7.5 avg.) and totaled 82 yards on four kickoff returns (20.5 avg.). In Week 3 at Cincinnati, he rushed for 103 yards, the most in franchise history by a rookie running back in his first game with a rushing attempt. Franklin also registered two tackles on special teams.
"It’s never easy releasing a player, but it's especially difficult when a young man's opportunity is taken away from him because of an injury,” Thompson said. “Johnathan is a great person, a wonderful teammate, and a man that lives by his faith. The Packers are fortunate to have had the chance to work with him and we know that he will excel in whatever the future holds for him. He will always be a member of the Packers family.”