Injured Packers TE Finley plans to have surgery

Packers tight end Jermichael Finley plans to have spinal fusion
surgery and intends to play football again.

Finley’s agent, Blake Baratz, said Thursday that Finley has been
working with the Packers organization in determining what’s best
after suffering a neck injury last month in a game against the
Browns.

Baratz said it was collectively determined that surgery may not
be 100 percent necessary, but is a ”proactive measure that should
alleviate future risks with regards to a similar episode or
re-injury.”

The statement said Finley’s long-term health is the primary
concern, and that Finley intends to resume playing again after
surgery to be performed by the Pittsburgh Steelers team
neurosurgeon. No timeline for surgery was given.

The doctor, Joseph Maroon, is experienced in conducting the type
of procedure on professional athletes in contact sports, and is
confident of a full recovery for Finley, the statement said.

”While his return to professional football is a hot-topic
conversation, his ability to live a long and fulfilling life with
his loved ones is by far and away our main objective,” the
statement said. Finley and his family said they appreciated the
outpouring of support received since the injury.

Finley was having good year with 25 catches for 300 yards and
three touchdowns when he was hurt. Finley, who was officially
placed on season-ending injured reserve last week, is a free agent
after this year.

Pro Football Talk first reported the statement Wednesday.

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Online:

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org