Only three days until the most electrifying Mountaineers receiver of all-time finds out where he will begin his NFL career.
Since the NFL Combine and the West Virginia University Pro Day, Tavon Austin has seen his draft stock rocket from a late 1st round-early 2nd round value to a can’t miss slam dunk top 10 prospect.
From ESPN analysts, to newspaper reporters, to bloggers, everyone is high on the shifty receiver. Reports from these varoius outlets have Austin going anywhere from the New York Jets to the Carolina Panthers to the Dallas Cowboys. Depending on which mock draft you put your money on, Austin will go as high as #7 or as low as #21.
He has made personal visits to the Detroit Lions, San Francisco 49ers, St. Louis Rams, and the Carolina Panthers amongst others. Needless to say, Austin is a hot commodity, even if most national pundits do not really understand his skill set.
On television and radio, people have been talking about Austin’s top end speed as an example of how Austin is a deep threat at the NFL level. Some even talk about how Austin spent so much time as a running back.
What is clear is not many of those analysts have watched film on Austin.
Tavon made his name taking the quick 5 yard receptions and turning them into 50 yard touchdowns with his incredible elusiveness. Austin only saw time at running back when the running game had ground to a halt, lighting up the stat sheet against Oklahoma. What Austin did not do was serve as a running back routinely at WVU. He saw action there for less than half a season, but excelled when given the opportunity.
Scouts and GMs understand the diverse skillset that Austin brings to an NFL roster, but the people commenting on his abilities in the national media do not fully understand it.
Either way, the exposure from these sources (myself included) have pushed Austin ever higher on the draft board. With only three days left and at least 30 more pieces on Austin to published across the country, do not be surprised to see Austin drafted as high as the top 5 of the NFL draft.
Odds are a team will trade up to grab Austin ahead of another interested franchise.