Last Chance U star John Franklin III gets another chance from Tampa Bay
25-year old wide receiver John Franklin III has seen some highs and lows as he bounced off from one college to another during his amateur career. He had short stints at Florida State University, East Mississippi Community College, Auburn University, and Florida Atlantic University. After a winding path, the Last Chance U star is getting another shot to crack an NFL roster with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians shared his sentiments to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times:
“He’s one of those guys who has got so much talent and athletic ability, you’re trying to find a place for him,” he said. “We ran that little wildcat package with him, and he did a great job with it. He can throw. [Now] he’s coming in as a wide receiver, so he’ll be in the offensive rooms. He could possibly give us a third quarterback on Sunday with his ability, so he’s got a lot of options, and it’s up to him to make the ball club as a wideout.”
Franklin was popularly known for his appearance on the Netflix documentary Last Chance U, which sheds light on small football programs across the country. His versatility led him to pursue many positions on the field. He played as a quarterback, wide receiver, running back, defensive back and return man. He’ll be bringing that same versatility to the Buccaneers.
After going undrafted in the 2018 NFL Draft, Franklin attended the Chicago Bears rookie minicamp on a tryout basis as a defensive back. After being cut, he was reinstated on the practice squad as a cornerback.
On November 13, 2019, Franklin was signed to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers practice squad and was promoted to the active roster a month later where he was listed as a wide receiver.
Franklin is looking to make the most out of this favorable opportunity that was given to him and ultimately hopes to remain in the league for years to come.