Played receiver, defensive back and kick returner in addition to playing basketball as a Texas prep. Played all 12 games in 2011 and caught 32 balls for 508 yards (15.9-yard average) and three touchdowns. Started all 12 games at the "Z" receiver in '12, totaling 74-1,245-9 (16.8). Sat out '13 spring practice as well as the first four games of the season because of academics -- returned to play eight games, starting the final six at the "H" receiver, and led the team in receiving for the second straight season with 52-670-7 (12.9). For his career, returned 29 kickoffs for 605 yards (20.9) and 12 punts for 1 yard (0.8). Also carried 28 times for 130 yards (6.4) and zero touchdowns.
Accelerates smoothly off the line and chews up ground with long strides. Sinks his hips and is sudden out of breaks to create separation. Slippery underneath. Quick, soft hands to catch off his frame. Catches in stride. Has springs to elevate and highpoint. Creates after the catch and turns short throws into long gains -- darts upfield quickly, dances past tacklers in space and shows long speed. Has experience covering kicks.
Is lean and needs to bulk up. Lined up in the slot and was not required to defeat press coverage. Ran an abbreviated route tree and needs refinement in this area. Prone to concentration drops. Questionable in traffic. Limited physicality and run strength. Underpowered blocker. Reception numbers were inflated by bubble screens. Does not project as an impact kick returner. Did not face NFL-caliber cornerbacks.
Priority free agent
A lean, speedy, finesse slot receiver, Franklin missed the first four games of the season (academics), but pulled in 44 catches and scored 6 TDs in the final five games of the season, showing speed, quickness and some playmaking ability. Is raw, but has developmental value.