Toronto’s Orlando Franklin, a former standout with the Ontario Varsity Football League’s Scarborough Thunder and at the University of Miami, is now a San Diego Charger.
The 6-foot-7, 320-pound offensive lineman was drafted in the 4th round of the 2011 NFL Draft, and started all 16 games for the Broncos last season.
On March 10, 2015, Franklin signed a free agent contract with the Chargers.
From Chargers.com :
The San Diego Chargers added a versatile and imposing figure to their offensive line Tuesday, agreeing to terms with guard Orlando Franklin on a five-year contract. The 6-7, 320-pounder adds even more beef to a massive line that features the 6-9, 330-pound King Dunlap and 6-5, 339-pound D.J. Fluker. Franklin played right tackle his first three seasons before kicking inside to guard in 2014. He burst onto the scene as a difference maker his rookie year, named to Football Outsiders All-Rookie Team as he helped the Broncos lead the NFL in rushing with a franchise-record 164.5 yards per game. He also anchored an offensive line that allowed the fewest sacks in the league in 2014 (17) and 2013(20). Franklin has appeared in and started 63 regular season games in addition to seven postseason contests including the Super Bowl. A dependable stalwart, he has missed only one game over his four year career. Franklin now reunites with Head Coach Mike McCoy, who was his offensive coordinator his first two years in the league. The 27-year old was born in Kingston, Jamaica before moving to Canada when he was three years old. He grew up in Toronto and played two seasons of high school football before moving to Delray Beach, Florida, where he attended Atlantic High School, the same school as cornerback Brandon Flowers who recently re-signed with San Diego. Franklin appeared in 51 games with 39 starts at left guard and left tackle at the University of Miami, earning multiple All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors in the process.
“Franklin played at an extremely high level for the Denver Broncos this past year as the team’s starting left guard after spending the first three years of his NFL career starting at the right tackle position. He is tough as they come and a mauler on the interior,” wrote Sayre Bedinger in a recent piece for NFLmocks.com. “One of the top run blockers on the market, Franklin developed really well as a pass protector while playing the left guard position. He struggled handling speed rushers at the right tackle spot at times, but he was vastly improved this past year and is in line to make around 6 or $7 million per season from a team needed s strong presence up front.” http://nflmocks.com/2015/03/02/ol-orlando-franklin-free-agency-fits-jets-eagles-vikings/
Although Franklin has publicly expressed his desire to stay with the Broncos, head coach Gary Kubiak’s zone blocking system is designed for more fleet-footed linemen.
“Effort is not the issue. The size of his potential contract and physique, however, increase the probability Franklin will sign elsewhere when the free-agent market opens,” wrote the Denver Post’s Troy E. Renck. http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_27637500/broncos-will-have-options-replace-og-orlando-franklin
Even Denver’s head of football operations, John Elway, noted that Franklin would be a hot property on the free agent market.
“He’s a good enough athlete to (play in the zone system),” Elway told the Denver Post. “But I think that Orlando is going to get a lot of interest at tackle or guard. He finished strong. There’s going to be a lot of interest in him.”