In the 2013 NFL Draft, Tavon Austin was hailed as one of the top wide receivers in the class. He was also called the most dynamic. So the Rams who needed talent and a player to help take their passing game to the next level traded up to draft Austin with the eighth overall pick of the draft. They also drafted his fellow teammate Stedman Bailey in the third round.
Just like when the two receivers were at West Virginia, Bailey has taken a backseat to Austin. Finally, this upcoming season could be the season for Bailey to show his skills and make a name for himself by himself.
Bailey came on at the end of the season and was solid. Granted it required Austin taking a backseat and Brian Quick (who was having a breakout season himself) to get hurt, but Bailey finished the season with 30 receptions and 435 receiving yards most of which occurred during the final seven games of the season.
This depends on how well Quick's recovery has gone. As of right now, he has been practicing, and if he is close to healthy he and Kenny Britt will be the top two receivers. Now if Quick is not healthy, it would be a surprise if Bailey was not the second receiver on the roster on most formations. Right now, I would pencil Bailey over Austin as the Rams primary slot receiver.
There are some solid expectations being placed on Bailey as we head in to the season. Many people saw his late-season surge and are claiming that he will be the third-year receiver to breakout and not his teammate Austin.
Personally it would be a surprise to me if Bailey is not a solid receiver this season. I expect Bailey to get the bulk of the snaps in the slot and for him to produce as a good slot receiver.
Chances of making the roster (10/10)
Bailey will make the roster and play on Sundays, the only question is what role will Bailey have. The thought process is that Bailey will get a lot of snaps, but that was the thought process last season also. Regardless, he appears to be a talented wide receiver and you can not have too many of those.