Rams close to getting WR Tavon Austin back

NEW ORLEANS, LA - NOVEMBER 27: Los Angeles Rams Wide Receiver Tavon Austin (11) catches a pass during an NFL game between the Los Angeles Rams and the New Orleans Saints on November 27, 2016, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by John Korduner/Icon Sportswire)
John Korduner/Icon Sportswire

Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Tavon Austin will not suit up for the team’s final preseason game against the Green Bay Packers on Thursday night. But that’s actually a positive when it comes to his outlook leading up to Week 1 of the regular season, according to his new head coach, Sean McVay.

We’re not going to play him against Green Bay,” said McVay on Sunday. “If it was a normal game week, I think he would be able to play. He’s made huge progress . . . over the last week where he’s running, reaching some higher speeds on the treadmill and stuff where it’s 100 percent of the weight that he’s supporting. So those have been some good things and you’ll start to figure out – we’re going to have to start brainstorming some ways with how we’re going to utilize Tavon in that game, which will be fun.”

That would mean that the next time Austin steps onto the field, it will be during Week 1 of the regular season when the Rams welcome in the Indianapolis Colts, who are dealing with injuries of their own, including quarterback Andrew Luck, who is far from a certainty to appear.

Austin has been dealing with a hamstring injury during the preseason, which has limited his time working with quarterback Jared Goff, who is beginning the season as a starter for the first time. Austin finished with career highs in receptions (58) and receiving yards (509) last year.

Along with Austin, Goff has a couple more weapons to utilize this season, with both Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods joining the fray as potential targets.

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