Johnathan Franklin, RB (196 pounds) - Franklin did a 30-inch vertical jump, and stood by the rest of his numbers from the combine. Franklin looked really outstanding in the position drills. He caught the ball well with no drops. He had just one double catch and one chest catch. - Gil Brandt, NFL.com
That's exactly what Franklin did, setting new school single-season records for rushing yards (1,734), all-purpose yards (2,062) and career records for rushing (4,403), all-purpose yards (4,920).
Franklin thrived in 2012 as part of UCLA's zone-read offense, routinely making something out of nothing with his fast, tough and energetic running style. Although he doesn't have the frame to get much bigger than 205 pounds, he has good muscle definition and has stayed durable over the years, leaving UCLA with 45 career starts.
Franklin loves to bounce runs outside with this vision and explosive lateral movements, reminding many of another former Bruin running back with a smaller stature, but very balanced attack (Maurice Jones-Drew).
He's affectionately been nicknamed "Jetski" by some on the team due to his ability to leave defenders in his wake. The catchy nickname is fun, but I have concerns about how well he'll transition to the NFL. Franklin lacks the bulk of an NFL lead back so he'd likely have to make a roster as a third-down specialist.
The problem is he hasn't demonstrated the reliable hands out of the backfield (25 career catches for just 194 yards and one score) nor is he a stout blocker in pass protection -- two traits normally associated with the speedy change-of-pace options NFL teams are increasingly employing in this era of specialization.
Perhaps most alarming is that Franklin has struggled with ball security. He fumbled three times in a five game stretch last year and it has been a sporadic problem going back earlier in his career.