The St. Louis Rams drafted former West Virginia play-making wide receiver Tavon Austin with the 8th pick in last year's draft to help take their offense to the next level. Instead, the Rams offense struggled in the passing game and fans hoping to see Austin become a great threat were disappointed.
Austin was the most dynamic player in college during the 2012-13 season. Austin did it all in college, returned kicks, receptions, and he even ran the ball. He was a very unique player, a hell of a playmaker, but he was a small receiver only being around 5'8. Situational players usually aren't drafted in the top 10, so when the Rams drafted him that high, expectations on him were to produce early and often.
Last season, there were unrealistic expectations for Austin. Many were predicting that he could be a candidate to win offensive rookie of the year. Instead, Austin showcased a lot of common rookie struggle. Austin didn't record a game with over 50 yards until week 10 against the Indianapolis Colts; finishing the game with over 314 all purpose yards and three touchdowns.
Expectations should be pretty high for Austin, but nothing through the roof. Austin should be able to rack up 700 receiving yards and 2 touchdowns returning kicks. The Rams teased having Austin move around the offense, but this season should showcase this more. Plus ,the fact that Austin has been getting snaps at running back is a positive sign. The Rams need to feed Austin the ball as often as possible. The Rams drafted Austin to become their Swiss army knife - a do it all type of receiver.
He has the ability to make plays on the field and is the biggest potential playmaker on the team. Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer just needs to find ways to use him effectively, but Austin needs to play better too.
Will Austin make the 2014 roster?
Of course. The Rams wouldn't let go of their starting receiver. Or would they? Okay, they won't.