Bills Continue to Add Former Rams Talent, Signs Ex-1st Rounder

Josh Allen

Getty Josh Allen escaped two Rams defenders during the Bills' last meeting versus L.A. played on September 27, 2020.

This has been an offseason that’s seen “Bills Mafia” take a surprising liking to past Los Angeles Rams.

First, Von Miller went from winning his second Super Bowl inside the “Rams House” to signing his mega six-year, $120 million deal with the Buffalo Bills in March 2022. The Bills also added tackle/guard Rodger Saffold, who began his career as a second rounder taken by the St. Louis Rams and then played three seasons in L.A., including the Rams’ Super Bowl 53 team.

Now, one more past beloved Rams player is heading toward Buffalo to add to the past L.A. representation. And he’s one who spent most of his career in a Rams uniform.

Who Signed With the Bills

Tavon Austin, once a top 10 pick by the Rams in the 2013 NFL Draft when the franchise was in St. Louis, took to his personal Instagram account to announce he’s signing with the AFC East champions.

The NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo captured a screenshot of Austin’s IG story, helping confirm the move.

Austin, now 32, is trekking back to the northern part of the east coast. Austin is a native of Baltimore and played collegiately at West Virginia, establishing himself as a high-caliber draft option after dominating with the Mountaineers — which included watching him produce 100-catch seasons in Morgantown and scored a combined 20 touchdowns in his final two collegiate seasons according to Sports Reference.

Where Austin Had His Most NFL Success

While Austin will be in a room with past beloved members of the Rams, this will be his fifth stop in his 10-season career.

The Bills will additionally represent his third team in a span of three seasons, as his previous stops were the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2021 and the Green Bay Packers the season before.

But before becoming an NFL journeyman, Austin was taken No. 8 overall by the Rams — and was one of the first day one selections for then-Rams head coach Jeff Fisher. That 2013 class for the Rams also featured a young linebacker named Alec Ogletree out of Georgia, who fell to the Rams at No. 30 overall.

Austin, however, only managed three starts and endured a grade 2 ankle sprain in December 2013. He finished his rookie campaign producing 40 catches, 418 yards and scored four times.

Austin’s starts expanded to eight the following season, but his numbers took a dip: 31 catches for 242 yards and no receiving touchdowns.

Year three, though, was when Austin began to show the signs of why the Rams took him at the eighth overall spot. Austin finished with 52 catches, 473 yards and 5 touchdowns, but he also added 434 rushing yards on 52 carries and tacked on four more trips to the end zone.

The 2016 season witnessed Austin’s best catches/yards totals across the board. His 58 receptions became a career-high along with the 509 receiving yards he racked up according to Pro Football Reference. He also produced a career-best 25 catches that were good enough for the first down.

Since that ’16 campaign, which would also be Fisher’s final season with the Rams before giving way to Sean McVay, Austin hasn’t produced 25 catches in a single season and has never surpassed two touchdowns. He also went through nearly two years without scoring a touchdown, which got broken on this play from November 28, 2021 against the Atlanta Falcons:

Of his 244 career catches, 3,600 total yards from scrimmage and combined 26 touchdowns, he caught 194 passes while producing 2,927 yards and scored 21 of his touchdowns in a Rams uniform. Now, heading to a place with fellow Ex-Rams could be what helps rejuvenate his career.

And, he’ll join Miller and Saffold on the Bills’ sidelines when they kickoff the 2022 season at SoFi Stadium against their former team.

Read More
Comment Here
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x