(FootballStL) -- The St. Louis Rams took the proactive approach to draft the newest weapon for Sam Bradford and a rebuilding offense on Thursday.
After acquiring the No. 8 overall pick from the Buffalo Bills, the Rams selected Tavon Austin, the top-rated wide receiver in the draft.
Austin, who stands 5-foot-8, was used mainly as a slot receiver during his college career with West Virginia and has experience in the backfield and as a returner, as well.
The Rams also received the Bills’ 71st pick and traded away their 16th, 46th, 78th and 222nd overall pick to move up in the draft.
While the price the Rams had to pay may be considered steep, the Rams are getting one of the fastest wide receivers to come out of the draft. Austin ran a 4.34-second 40-yard dash at the scouting combine.
For Austin, he knew the Rams were highly interested in him.
“I thought they had a good feeling just off the vibe they had given,” Austin said. “It was all smiles and everything when I was there.”
One of the criticisms, outside of his small size, has been the fact that he played mostly as a slot receiver during college. That should be no problem for the Rams, who lost slot receiver Danny Amendola to free agency this offseason.
The move also got the approval of the team’s wide receivers.
Austin Pettis tweeted, “Weapons being added.” and Chris Givens tweeted, “Couldn’t be more excited about the pick!”
The Rams’ selection of Austin marks the first time the team selected a wide receiver since Torry Holt (No. 6) in 1999.
“That’s an honor,” Austin said. “That’s a legend, I watched him when I was young. I just want to come in and do the same thing he did when he was there.”
Austin becomes the fifth wide receiver selected in the last two-plus drafts by the Rams. The others are Brian Quick, Givens, Pettis and Greg Salas.