If I've heard it once, I've heard it a million times. Literally! Thank you everyone on here and the main stream media for bashing the "Orlando Franklin should move to Left Guard and Chris Clark should take his spot at Right Tackle" talk against my brain for the last 2 months. I get it, most of you want to take a freaking grenade and blow up 2/5 of our incredible offensive line. I get it, I really do. I just don't agree. And when I don't agree, I get very (what's the word I'm looking for?) umm, very stubborn. Below is a peek inside the MHR chat room where we discuss things and bounce ideas off of each other. Naturally I've edited this up and made it rated PG because it can get a bit crazy in there at times (cussing abounds when I dig my heels into the dirt. Unfortunately, you will never see the true comedy that comes out of my mouth because it's definitely NSFW because of language). I do want to emphasize that we all love each other, so don't take things we say to each other as disrespectful, because we always talk like this and know we do it for comedy value and to just have fun. I just thought this would be a fun "peak behind the curtains" type of article for a slow NFL week. Enjoy!
Pete: I still HATE all this "Franklin to Left Guard" nonsense. STOP IT!!!! He's one of the best tackles in the freaking NFL. Why on God's green earth would someone want to move one of the best players at his position to a different position and then replace him with a backup player? IT MAKES NO SENSE!!!!! What if Franklin can't transition to the opposite side of the field at a different position? Then not only did you weaken a strength (RT), but you didn't fix a weakness (LG). Or, what if Clark can't transition to right tackle? Then you not only weakened a position of strength, but you also didn't really make the line any better as there would still be a hole in the line.
Yeah, I said it!
Scott: Franklin played guard in college, and was projected to be a guard or right tackle in the NFL. Moving Franklin to LG (which he played in college) and Clark to RT has to be at least looked into. If you can fill the needs within, go for it.
Pete: Bah! Shannon Sharpe played WR in college... STUD TE in NFL. Bet he would have sucked if the Broncos decided that WR was a weakness so they moved Sharpe to wide receiver because "what the hell, he did it in college", totally oblivious that he is a freaking STUD at the position he played and made a name for in the NFL.
All I'm saying is that we know Franklin is a stud at Right Tackle. So why move him to Left Guard where he may or may not work out? We know Clark filled in admirably for Clady, but there is zero guarantee that he won't perform like the UNDRAFTED COLLEGE FREE AGENT that he was if moved to right tackle.
As it stands, the offensive line has exactly one hole to fill (LG), which I think Clark might be able to fill cause he'd at least stay on the left side. If you move people around, you may very well end up with two holes to fill instead of just one. And that isn't even counting Manny at center!
Scott: This is the time of year to try it though. I don't think moving Franklin is their top option, but it should be considered. And, replacing RT's isn't the toughest thing in the world. For all we know, Franklin could be a stud left guard. Maybe Clark would be a better right tackle than left tackle. If you can fill the needs within, I say go for it. It's not like we're moving Clady! haha
If it doesn't work out, just move him (Franklin) back to RT before camp. We're going to sign a vet at some point, and more than likely at least draft one O-Lineman. I don't understand the backlash about possibly moving Franklin. Sure he's good, but he's no Pro-Bowler or whatever.
Pete: Then they might as well use this time of the year to see if Clark can be a stud left guard, right? Why start messing with the entire line when you really only have to mess with one spot? Try Clark out at LG. We already know he was ok at LT, so maybe he'll be great at LG? Then you keep continuity up and down the line instead of moving pieces around like an over-matched chess opponent.
Scott: I'd give that a look too. I'd try Franklin first because he has experience at LG.
Pete: Personally I'd try Clark at LG first. If he does good, then problem solved. I only start switching players around as a last resort. Our offensive line was one of the best lines in the NFL. Why mess with that chemistry? Keep players where they are, get Clady back (the 1 person out from last year), and then move the person (Clark) who was subbing in for Clady to line up next to Clady. Just line him up next to Clady and be done with it! There is zero rhyme or reason to start playing musical chairs with the line. Zero! Try plugging the one hole, and if it doesn't leak, then job well done. If it does leak, then and only then do you start playing musical chairs especially seeing people complain about training camp and preseason games being "not real games, thus you don't get a real look at how they play". So by that philosophy, you'll never get a true gauge at how Clark to RT and Franklin to LG will work until the bullets are live anyways.
Scott: That whole "chemistry along the O-Line" thing is very overrated among fans.
Pete: Maybe among fans, but not among players and coaches.
Scott: The Broncos had a 3rd string center and a backup left tackle along the O-Line and it worked out just fine. And O-Lines switch up every year anyways!
Pete: Listen to any strong position group and the first thing they'll always attribute to their success is their continuity and ability to rely on the guy next to them. You don't get that playing musical chairs with position groups.
Scott: It's March! There's plenty of time to work on chemistry.
Pete: Exactly! It's March which means there is PLENTY of time to see if Clark can slide over 4 feet and play equally well as he did last year.
Scott: It's not like we're blowing up the O-Line before week one! Why move a guy to a position he's never played? (referring to Clark never playing LG)
Pete: No, it IS exactly like you're blowing up the line. Three of five positions will get impacted (Note: I can't remember if I was talking about Clady coming back meaning LT, LG, RG or if I was talking about Manny maybe sliding around).
Scott: Plus we potentially would be moving two guys who already have been on the roster, so it wouldn't be nearly as bad.
Pete: Ok, I'm gonna break it down kindergarten style.
The Broncos have in order from left to right, Clady (All Pro), NOBODY, Manny (one of the better centers by everyone's surprise last year), Vasquez (All Pro), Franklin (Pro Bowler, or alt pro bowler).
So realistically, you are SET, like 100% SET on the line except for exactly one position! 1 position!!!
Scott: Franklin isn't a Pro-Bowler haha. Pro Bowl right tackles don't get killed by speed rushers!
Pete: So instead of moving a pro bowler (or alternative, for whoever wants to fight me on it), you simply see if the dude who played 4 feet to the left can simply move 4 feet to the right and play at the same level.
Ugh, I'm getting nowhere. It's like trying to teach algebra to a stop sign! Why am I expecting the stop sign to reply with the obvious and correct answer which would be to have the all pro player who is coming back simply take back his spot and have the dude who filled in for him conveniently slide next to him in the only hole on the entire line?!?! Nooooooooo, that's way too freaking simple! Might as well throw dynamite into the freaking line and let the body parts fall where they may. Screw it, it'll be the same 5 people's body parts as before, so surely it'll work out right? ARGHHHHHHH
Scott: Let me break this down to you slowly. Why would you want to move a guy to a position that he has never played? I'm all for giving it a shot, but let's give the guy who has a history at LG (Franklin) a shot and put Clark in at RT after he did an admirable job at LT last year.
Pete: BECAUSE CLARK WAS A DAMN UNDRAFTED COLLEGE FREE AGENT PLAYING RIGHT FREAKING TACKLE!!! DO YOU WANT TO REPLACE PRO BOWL CALIBER TALENT WITH UNDRAFTED COLLEGE TALENT? ANYONE WHO SAYS YES NEEDS TO BE KICKED IN THE JUNK AND GROUNDED FROM THE NFL FOR 3 YEARS!!!
Scott: Their draft status is meaningless at this point in their careers.
Pete: Exactly! So Franklin playing guard in college is MEANINGLESS at this point in his career! THANK YOU!!! That's my whole freaking point! Franklin is a great right tackle in the NFL. KEEP HIM THERE!!! There is exactly one hole, and it is next to the position that Clark played well at. So slide over 4 freaking feet and see if you can plug that hole. To expect Clark to be talented enough to slide across the line is foolhardy especially seeing that last year was the only point in his entire 5 year career that he proved to be anything more than a bubble player backup.
Scott: I'm not disagreeing with you, I'm just saying that I'd try Franklin there too. The team has messed with it during training camp before, so don't be surprised if they try again; Especially after Clark played well this year.
Pete: Might as well see if Manning can be the freaking kick returner then. Screw it, why not? He touches the ball more than any player on the field, so surely he'll catch the ball, right? Rumor has it Manning played well last year just like Clark did. Might as well put Demaryius Thomas back on kickoffs. I've seen him perform well with that stuff too!
Scott: When in defeat, make up nonsense ;)
Pete: Why not? You are making up nonsense too. I'm just trying to dumb myself down a bit to talk on this "Clark and Franklin switch" level ;) :P Sorry, you just have me worked up.
Scott: haha I'm sorry man. I don't disagree with you. If Clark can play LG, awesome! WHy not see how Franklin does there too since he has a history? Hell, Clark could be a better RT than Franklin. Doesn't hurt to try! I mean, what if the coaches never tried Sharpe at TE? It's March. There's plenty of time to figure this stuff out.
Pete: They only played Sharpe at TE cause a coach said the defense was pissed that they couldn't cover him. haha. And its ok. It's just this whole debate that people constantly have about Franklin moving when there really is no logical reason to move him unless Clark is incapable of filling in Beadles' hole. There is one odd man out this year (Clark), and only one hole to fill (Beadles). So try filling it with the odd man out first. If that doesn't work, then and only then do you scramble to see if other moves work out. You don't start blowing up the line first and work backwards. That's like cutting off your toe because you don't want to find out if the toenail clippers work or not, but you know for a fact that the toenail needs to get trimmed! It just makes no sense.
Scott: It doesn't look like they're thinking about moving either to left guard anyways since they're looking at Centers. Manny would probably go back to LG.
Pete: Manny to left guard and us getting a real center is my favorite move and one I was really hoping would work out with Montgomery because then you keep Clark as a floater along the entire line.
Scott: The Broncos will probably sign a vet and draft a guy and go from there.
Pete: I hope so because the next time I hear "Franklin to guard so we can see if a scrub player can take over after having exactly one good year in 5 or 6 years," I'm gonna go on an Archer Rampage!
Note: Just today, our beloved Left Guard Mark Schlereth agreed with Scott.
.@markschlereth says Left Guard is "the best place for Orlando Franklin"— Cecil Lammey (@cecillammey) March 24, 2014
Let the rampage begin!!! (NSFW because of some language)