Rams pull surprising move by bringing Tavon Austin back for 2018

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

Despite previous reports about how the Los Angeles Rams would cut or trade him, it looks like Tavon Austin will return for the 2018 season.

In an offseason filled with numerous trades to improve the defense along with clear salary cap space, one of the biggest questions surrounding the Los Angeles Rams was what the future would hold for Tavon Austin. A few weeks ago, reports came out about how the Rams planned on moving on from the receiver either through a trade or release since they wouldn’t take as big of a hit financially as before, but it looks like those plans have changed.

Turns out, Los Angeles has reportedly decided to bring back Austin for the 2018 season, which is safe to say a move that nobody really saw coming when looking at the lack of production from the wideout over the years. Expectations were high for the former West Virginia standout when the Rams rewarded Austin with a hefty $42 million extension before the 2016 season, but when looking at his numbers from the previous two years, he was arguably one of the league’s most overpaid players.

With only $5 million in dead money tied to Austin’s contract if he were to be released, this seemed to be the likely option for Los Angeles. Instead, it looks like the Rams were able to convince Austin to restructure his deal, although that certainly won’t make fans feel better about the situation.

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As if setting a career high of 509 receiving yards in 2017 wasn’t already frustrating enough since these numbers are a joke for a player that’s supposed to be a No. 1 wide receiver, Austin found a whole new way to disappoint this past season by only catch 13 passes for a total of 47 yards. Even if Sean McVay ended up using him more as a running back, the fact that Austin was only able to display these kind of receiving numbers in an offense that everyone else seemed to succeed in was beyond frustrating. While it was great to see Los Angeles convince him to restructure his ridiculous contract, only time will tell when it comes to whether the team should have just cut the cord, and part ways with Austin for good.