When the Rams made wide receiver Tavon Austin the eighth overall pick of the 2013 draft, Austin said he had a lot of “cousins” coming to him with their hands out in hopes of getting some of the money Austin will earn when he signs his deal with St. Louis.
It’s the kind of situation that can lead to bad things down the road, as Cowboys tackle Tyron Smith has experienced, and the kind of off-field distraction that can slow down a young player’s transition to the NFL. Rams cornerback Janoris Jenkins doesn’t want to see that happen to Austin, both because he has experience in how the wrong decisions can impact your football career and because he thinks Austin has the kind of talent that can help the Rams offense catch fire next season.
“He’s pretty fast, he’s a dynamic receiver. Great speed, great hands, great quickness,” Jenkins said during an interview with Andrew Siciliano of the NFL Network. “I think he can be very special. He’s just got to work, stay focused and, like I said, just put himself around positive people. But as far as talent-wise he has it all.”
Austin is expected to be a very busy man in the Rams offense, using his speed and athleticism to make plays all over the field for quarterback Sam Bradford. It’s something the Rams have lacked in Bradford’s first three seasons, so we’re guessing Jenkins isn’t the only member of the organization who wants to see Austin free of off-field issues that would slow him down on the field.