Why Troy Franklin Is Being Undervalued Heading Into The NFL Draft


There is always a focus on quarterbacks heading into the draft and understandably so. There are a lot of good ones heading into the 2024 NFL draft. But as the NFL has evolved, wide receivers are becoming more and more important to a team’s success.

This year’s draft is loaded with good wide receivers. There could be three that go in the top 10 of the draft and a couple more to round out the first round. The top three receivers are Marvin Harrison Jr., Malik Nabers, and Rome Odunze. There really isn’t a debate about it, but the fourth receiver is up for debate.

One of the players in the running for that fourth receiver spot is Oregon’s Troy Franklin. Franklin had a record breaking season for the Ducks finishing with 81 catches, 1,383 yards, and 14 touchdowns. Franklin helped himself at the NFL scouting combine by running a 4.41 40 yard dash. When you look at most mock drafts though, you may not see Franklin in the first round.

Pro Football Focus’ Sam Monson put out an article naming the five most underrated prospects in the NFL draft. Troy Franklin was on that list. Monson says there is a lot to like about Franklin and he doesn’t understand why Franklin isn’t getting more play as the No. 4 ranked wide receiver in the draft class.

“Brian Thomas Jr. is the consensus WR4 in this draft while Franklin is ranked four spots below that and 21 spots lower on the overall consensus board. However, over the last two seasons in similar roles, Franklin has been the more productive player. Even focusing on the 2023 season alone you could argue Franklin was the better player, though Thomas scored three more touchdowns and can at least rival him in some other statistical categories.

Franklin averaged 3.32 yards per route run in 2023, more than half a yard higher than Thomas.

Even as designated deep threats, it’s hard to understand the discrepancy between the two receivers. Thomas again scored more touchdowns than Franklin on deep targets this season, but outside of that, their numbers were remarkably similar, as Franklin dealt with a quarterback significantly less inclined to take those deep shots (Bo Nix) than Thomas (Jayden Daniels).

It’s fair to say that Franklin hasn’t been the most well-rounded receiver in the game and wonder how that translates to the next level, but the same criticisms apply to Thomas, and while the LSU product did run a faster 40 time (4.33 seconds vs. 4.41), both players displayed high-end NFL speed.

Troy Franklin is seen as a fringe first-round player, but his draft stock should be higher than that. One of the most productive receivers in college football has a profile that compares very well to the consensus fourth-best receiver in this draft.”

There is a thought that Bo Nix and Jackson Powers-Johnson both go in the first round of the NFL. It now seems like there is a chance that Franklin could join them and make it three Ducks in the first round.

Read the entire article by Sam Monson by clicking here.