John Franklin III played college football in Florida State, Auburn and Florida Atlantic, but is famous for his stint at East Mississippi Community College, where he was one of the protagonists of the Netflix documentary series Last chance U. He is now getting what could be his last chance in a football career in Tampa Bay.
Buccaneer coach Bruce Arians has said of Franklin what all coaches seem to say about him: he’s a phenomenal athlete, but he has to find a way to contribute on the pitch.
“He’s one of those guys who have so much talent and athletic ability, you’re looking to find a place for him,” said Arians, via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times. “We brought that little pack of wild cats with us, and it did a great job with it. He can cast. [Now] it is coming as a large receiver, so it will be in the offensive rooms. Sunday could give us a third quarterback with his skills, so he has a lot of options, and it’s up to him to make the club ball. “
Franklin spent time as a quarterback, wide receiver, running backwards, defensively and returning the man and did some flashy games, but never found the consistency coaches they were looking for. Last year he was part of the Orsi test team as a cornerback, while this year the Bucs will make him learn the offense. Franklin says he is happy to be in the NFL after documenting his low point Last chance U.
“Junior college has changed my life,” said Franklin. “It’s when I hit rock bottom. That was a time when I was growing more as an individual and more as a player and really more as a man. He taught me to survive. I was completely out of the Mississippi alone. School was bad Everyone had to go home and we only had six kids out of state. You had to learn to survive. Dinner was at 6 and we trained until 9. We would only have metros and gas stations, so how would you have eaten? really grow and learn to do without. “
Now Franklin has another opportunity to prove that his long and winding path in football has a final destination in the NFL.