The Los Angeles Chargers continue to revamp their offensive line.
ESPN first reported the move.
Franklin signed a five-year, $36.5 million contract in 2015. He lasted just two seasons with the Chargers. Cutting ties saves L.A. $2.8 million against the cap, per OverTheCap.com, while leaving $4.8 million in dead money. The Chargers owed Franklin $3.5 million guaranteed this season, but decided swallowing that pill was worth it to move forward with younger options.
The 29-year-old is coming off two of the worst seasons of his six-year career. Often pushed into the backfield, Franklin was part of an injury-ravaged, disappointing offensive line that left Philip Rivers battered and opened few holes in the ground game. Pro Football Focus rated Franklin their No. 66 guard last season out of 72 qualifying players. Despite the struggles, expect the veteran to find a home before training camps open.
Franklin became expendable when the Chargers added two guards in the draft: Forrest Lamp in the second-round, and Dan Feeney in the third. Lamp was projected by many analysts to go in the first round and could end up the steal of the draft. Feeney was reportedly the apple of the New England Patriots’ eye in the third round.
While it could be risky to move forward with youth, the rookies provide more upside and cheaper options than Franklin.
Franklin’s exit follows the cutting of guard D.J. Fluker and tackle King Dunlap this offseason. In their place sits the youngsters and Donavon Clark at guard and big-money free-agent left tackle Russell Okung. If the new group stays healthy, the Chargers could boast the best offense of the Rivers era.