Coming into the season, expectations were high on the St. Louis Rams wide receivers. Young and talented, but for whatever the reasons, the Rams receivers aren't who we thought they were.
This is a group that needs some seasoning and time. Expectations that were high weren't reasonable. We know the group has been disappointing thus far this season, but what about individually? Hmm...
Chris Givens: 22 Receptions, 354 Yards
The expectations on Givens were high coming into the season. But like the rest of this Rams team, those expectations have fallen short. Givens haven't had success catching the ball deep this season, which was his forte last year. However on the bright side, he's been making catches in the short and intermediate range.
Givens is the only bright spot of the receiving core so far. However, he's not a possession receiver, and he needs the other guys to distract the defense so he can blow the top off and catch a deep pass. Given's might not be a traditional number one, but he can be a damn good receiver if he isn't the only one that defenses have to worry about covering.
Tavon Austin: 31 Reception, 207 Yards, 2 Touchdowns
The most electrifying player to come out of college in the past few years hasn't been as explosive as the Rams or many coaches would have hoped so far in his career. It appears as though the Rams are beginning to slowly faze Austin out of the offense and that's a shame. He really doesn't look that bad on All-22 game film and he goes all out on plays unlike some players (looking at you Cook), but he just needs to be on the field more.
Austin has had two problems this season, catching the ball and making people miss in the open field. Hopefully, with more seasoning, Austin will be able to make players look silly and create buzz plays for the Rams. He's had three punt returns called back, as well as a deep touchdown. If it wasn't for penalties, people wouldn't be as disappointed in the Rams 1st round choice as they have been.
Austin Pettis: 27 Receptions, 284 Yards, 4 Touchdowns
Pettis hasn't been bad this season. He is having the best season of his career, so that's a plus. However, there's just not much upside with Pettis, everyone knows what the Rams have in Pettis: a receiver that deserves to be on the team, but would he be a starter on any other team? I doubt it.
He's a good short range receiver, and makes catches for the first down or touchdown that make you shake your head in agreement. But he's not going to be the reason the Rams win games. If Brian Quick or Stedman Baileywere up to snuff, Pettis wouldn't be starting.
Brian Quick: 9 Receptions, 196 Yards, 1 Touchdowns
Quick has just been disappointing. Not only have he proved the Rams right by starting Pettis over him, but he's making the franchise look bad for drafting him in the second round. It's disturbing because he flashes the ability to be a Terrell Owens type of receiver. Just like Owens, he drops passes. However, he doesn't use his body to his advantage.
Quick has to start showing improvement this season. The drop passes hurt, but so does all the other little stuff that he doesn't do.The team will keep giving him opportunities until he proves he can - or can't - do it. The talent is there, he just needs to put it together.
Stedman Bailey: Nothing
Not going to waste too much time on Bailey. Coming into the season, Bailey was a player that I wanted to keep an eye on. He runs good routes and he had good hands during his time in college; often bailing his quarterback, Geno Smith, out.
However - for whatever reason - the Rams have decided against using Bailey on offense. Is it because of his knowledge of the playbook that he doesn't play on offense, or is it something else? Maybe Bailey will show up during the latter part of the season, but there's nothing that tells us that he will play meaningful snaps this season. Hell, the team had an injured Zac Stacy play receiver, and not Bailey.