Austin returns to LA
Former WVU receiver set to face old squad
FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Tavon Austin’s fresh start with the Dallas Cowboys wasn’t much different than the stale final season the versatile receiver endured with the Los Angeles Rams.
The difference is that Austin has a chance to change the feeling — against his former team, in the divisional round of the playoffs.
The Cowboys traded for Austin during the draft, but he missed nine games after injuring a groin. While he was out just one game last season under first-year Rams coach Sean McVay, Austin was hampered by wrist and hamstring issues while simply getting buried on the depth chart.
He’s trying not to view Saturday night’s game in LA as a matchup of a team that wanted him against a team that didn’t .
“You’re always going to feel disrespected because you’re getting traded,” Austin said. “If you get traded, evidently you’re not doing something right. Or you ain’t getting it done, or they don’t believe in you. I felt disrespected, but at the end of the day it’s the business side.
“(McVay) talked to me on the phone about it and told me he was going to give me a chance to go somewhere else and finish my career. And that was good enough for me.”
Austin had the first long play of the season for the Cowboys, a 64-yard touchdown catch from Dak Prescott in a Week 2 win over the New York Giants before getting injured four weeks later. He returned in time for the regular-season finale at New York, setting up a strong showing in the 24-22 wild-card win over Seattle.
An 80-yard punt return for a touchdown was nullified by a holding penalty that didn’t make any difference in Austin breaking free. He added a 51-yard return early in the fourth quarter.