Miami Dolphins Scouting Report: Tavon Austin

I'm continuing my series of scouting potential receiver prospects for the Miami Dolphins. Today I'm going to be talking about a guy who just this weekend put on a show at the NFL Scouting Combine.

That receiver is Tavon Austin out of West Virginia. Austin is a tiny little guy. He measured at 5'8" tall and 174 pounds, but he makes up for it in pure speed.

Austin was a versatile playmaker in the explosive West Virginia offense. At the combine he ran a 4.34 40-yard dash, which was second to only Marquise Goodwin out of Texas. He projects as a late first or early second round pick in the draft this year, but I don't expect he'll be available when Miami picks in the second.

It almost doesn't seem fair to classify Austin as a receiver because he lined up at running back so much, but due to his small size he will be considered a receiver in the pros. He is blazing fast, makes great cuts, and has amazingly quick feet. He has excellent vision with the ball in his hands and is a guy who can break a lot of big plays.

Austin's biggest negative is his height. It wouldn't be a problem if he was a running back, but since he is a receiver it hurts him. From the tape I watched it was hard to get a grip on how he is catching the ball, so I had to do a little searching on him. Here's something by Dan Kadar with SB Nation:
Doesn't always catch the ball with his hands. Austin will let the ball get into his body to make a catch. He went over the middle at times for West Virginia, but dropped some passes anticipating a hit.
Austin is a very interesting prospect for a team with an already established top receiver. If Miami were able to get one or two other receivers then I would love for them to take Austin in the second round, but I doubt the Dolphins end up with him because he will likely be taken before that.

Because of his size I have Austin as the fourth best receiver for the Dolphins behind (in order) Cordarrelle Patterson, Keenan Allen, and Justin Hunter. If I were a team who already had a big receiver or two I might consider putting Austin higher on that list, but for Miami I have him at four. His size concerns me too much for a team like the Dolphins.

Here is some film on Tavon Austin from this year. Enjoy.

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