The Jacksonville Jaguars today signed rookie linebacker Stephen Franklin to the active roster from the practice squad and waived veteran linebacker Kevin Bentley. The club added second-year safety Akwasi Owusu-Ansah (uh-KWA-see uh-WOO-sue-ahn-sah) to the practice squad.
Franklin, 6-0, 235, was originally signed as an undrafted rookie by the Cincinnati Bengals this year and spent the preseason with the Bengals. He was waived on Aug. 27 and signed by Seattle where he spent a week on the active roster. The Jaguars signed him to the practice squad on Oct. 26.
A four-year letterman at Southern Illinois, Franklin compiled 174 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 6.5 sacks and three forced fumbles. A native of Kansas City, he attended North Kansas City High School where he was a four-year team captain. He earned all-conference honors as a running back and linebacker his final two seasons.
Franklin wears jersey number 58.
Owusu-Ansah, 6-1, 207, was a fourth-round draft pick of the Dallas Cowboys in 2010 and played in 10 games the last two seasons for the Cowboys as a defensive back and return specialist. He averaged 21.4 yards on 28 kickoff returns and 7.8 yards on six punt returns. He spent the first nine weeks this season on the Cowboys practice squad before he was elevated to the 53-man roster for three games.
As a rookie, Owusu-Ansah was used primarily as a kickoff returner and returned 25 kickoffs for 543 yards (21.7 avg.) with a long of 41. He played in 10 games before suffering an ankle injury against Jacksonville and missed the remainder of the season.
Owusu-Ansah played in 43 games with 21 starts at Indiana University of Pennsylvania at defensive back and also served as the primary returner. He owns school career records for kickoff return yards (1,371), kickoff return touchdowns (three) and punt return yards (788). He set a single-season school record with three punt returns for touchdowns as a senior and also had two kickoff returns for scores. He attended Whetstone High School in Columbus, Ohio and his family is from Ghana, Africa. His first name, Akwasi, means "Born on Sunday."
Owusu-Ansah will wear jersey number 41.