Fantasy Impact: St. Louis Rams select Tavon Austin
Tavon Austin has wowed fans at West Virginia for the last four years with his remarkable quickness, agility, toughness, and play-making ability. Austin garnered several awards during his time in Morgantown including: The Paul Hornung Award (NCAA most versatile player), First team all American as an all-purpose player, a jaw dropping performance against Oklahoma where he racked up 572 all-purpose yards (2nd most in FBS history), and finished eighth in Heisman votes. Austin had a successful combine where he ran the 40 yard dash in 4.34 and a 20 yard shuttle time of 4.01 both ranked in the top five of all 2013 combine performers. Tavon Austin’s primary strengths include: versatility, elite speed, small space quickness, durability, toughness and field vision.
Austin is a very versatile wide receiver that was used as a running back and return specialist while at West Virginia. His speed at the combine was top three but added with his lateral movement and his agility is unmatched. His ability to make plays in small spaces makes him a future yards after the catch (YAC) specialist in the NFL. In his time at West Virginia, Austin did not miss a game due to injury. His field vision allows him to find a crease quickly and exploit defenses with his speed. His ability to make plays and the possibility to score every time he touches the ball is evident on film. Due to Austin’s size (5’8″, 174 lbs.) his primary position in the NFL will be as a slot wide receiver. Austin is a tough player that is willing to make plays over the middle of the field. Even when it appeared that he took a big hit, Austin would pop up and run back to the huddle.
Most scouts and fans alike would say that his primary weakness is his size. Historically, players of Austin’s size do not have a long shelf life in the NFL. As mentioned previously Austin did not miss a game in college due to injury, but certainly the size and speed of players in the NFL are magnified when compared to college players. Austin’s size limits him from playing the outside wide receiver and there may be issues blocking against longer and stronger NFL cornerbacks. Austin has average hands and sometimes traps passes with the body than making hands catches which could become more of an issue with zipped passes over the middle from NFL quarterbacks.
|Year||School||Rec||Yards||TD||Rush Att||Yards||TD||K Ret Yds||P Ret Yds||Ret TD|
College statistics courtesy of Sports Reference.
Fantasy Impact with the St. Louis Rams
The St. Louis Rams add Tavon Austin to a great young receiving corps. Austin can play multiple positions for the Rams is an instant impact player on offense and in the return game. His ability to score anytime he touches the ball will add a dimension to an offense that has struggled to move the ball since Sam Bradford arrived. Austin becomes the slot receiver with the loss of Danny Amendola. Austin has instant fantasy impact in an offense looking for a true number one wide receiver.