The Rams have had one of the most disappointing and lacklustre offenses over the past few years, but with a recent influx in young talent, the Rams have to get more out of one of their first round picks and I think they finally will this year.
The first round pick in question is Tavon Austin. The former 8th overall pick was slated to become one of the most exciting players in the NFL with his elite athletic ability and versatility. He can return kicks, be a good receiver and is as good as running jet sweeps and reverses as anyone.
Nevertheless, the Rams just can’t seem to get the best out of him and he really doesn’t touch the ball enough to really break out. This year though, the pieces seem to be in place more so than ever before. With this year’s 1st overall pick, QB Jared Goff, and last year’s 10th overall pick, RB Todd Gurley, in the backfield, Austin is playing in what could be the most talented offense he ever has with the Rams. What this means is that defenses have to respect the surrounding talent, thus taking some of the focus away from him.
Remember Percy Harvin’s stellar year with the Vikings in 2012? That’s the type of scenario Austin could find himself in. Now, I’m not saying this Rams offense is as good as that Vikings offense, but it’s built in a similar way. Goff is a very accurate passer who will likely be asked to throw a lot of screen passes off play action. That’s exactly what Austin needs. Furthermore, they can use the threat of Gurley running wild to utilise Austin on more jet sweeps and reverses, exploiting the defenses lack of numbers on the perimeter.
Last year, he had 141 all-purpose touches, 1191 all-purpose yards and 10 all-purpose touchdowns. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him hit 800 receiving yards, 400 rushing yards and another 300 punt return yards, with at least 12 total touchdowns. That’s probably the least that they expect from him, giving him a 4-year, $42 million contract.