Rams fans have been waiting for Tavon Austin to come out of his shell all season and make the same xplosive plays that he made throughout his college career at West Virginia. Austin did just that in the Rams surprising 38-8 win in Indianapolis against the Colts.
Austin had been plagued by big plays being overturned by penalties and dropped passes which lead to many fans and experts calling him a bust just halfway through his rookie season.
This Sunday was different however. Austin came out and had the breakout game everybody was waiting for having 314 total yards and three touchdowns. Austin’s first score came on a 98 yard punt return which was the longest Rams punt return since Robert Bailey went 103 yards in 1994. Austin also had touchdown receptions of 81 and 56 yards.
Austin will certainly gain a lot more fans and support after this week an will hopefully have many for games like this in the future.
Everything was just clicking for the Rams today. On the seventh play from scrimmage Robert Quinn had a sack fumble that was picked up by Chris Long who returned the ball 45 yards for a touchdown to give the Rams an early 7-0 lead. That would be the first of five turnovers for the defense.
The Rams defense seems to be hit or miss this season, and they were definitely a hit today, rattling Andrew Luck and giving him problems all afternoon sacking him three times getting after him all day.
Part of Luck’s problem may have been the Colts inability to run the football. The Rams defense that had been struggling to stop the run forgot to show up today and the defense that dominates the line of scrimmage did holding Richardson to a whopping two yards rushing and Donald Brown to an overwhelming -1 yard.
The only hiccup for the Rams was when they were up 7-0 at the 5 yard line Clemens and Stacy messed up the exchange which lead to the teams second red zone turnover in the past two weeks. Luckily the defense bailed out the offense forcing a three out.
The Rams lead 28-0 after the first half with scores coming from Quinn, Stacy, and two from Tavon Austin. Austin got things going in the second half with another long touchdown reception to put the Rams up 35-0 then Greg Zuerlein kicked a field goal to put the Rams up 38-0. The Colts only score came on a Luck pass to Donald Brown and then Colby Fleener caught the two-point conversion.
Zac Stacy continued to be effective rushing for his 4th touchdown of the season to go along with 62 yards. Clemens also played effective completing 9 of his 16 passes for 247 yards.
The Rams are now 4-6 and will head into the bye week on a high note. In order for the Rams to continue to win, they need to play similar to how they played today. Obviously five turnovers and a punt return for a touchdown don’t happen every week, but the defense needs to set this game as their standard forcing a turnover or two in order to help out the offense and special teams needs to give the offense good field position.
The season is far from over. There are six games left and a lot of football to be played. If the Rams can set this game as their standard and build off of it, there is no reason why they can’t make a late push for a wild card spot.