Calvin Austin III
@SMU (2020), @ UCF (2020), vs Mississippi State (2021)
Exposing DBs in one-on-one situations with his quick COD ability and speed allows him to make plays deep down the field. Burst in the open field allows him to take off in any play for six. Very elusive in open space and maintains good balance when facing contact. When coming off the LOS, his quick get offs give him an advantage when gaining separation. A smooth route runner that can make sharp cuts that relates to his quick separation ability. A large route tree is in his arsenal. Can make contested catches on back shoulders and deep balls in traffic. Red zone threat that wins with quick slants and double moves.
Being able to consistently make jump ball 50/50 catches is not in his primary arsenal. This is a WR that plays small and realizes more on his speed, route running, and versatility to make plays. When carrying the ball, he tends to beat opponents in space with quickness/speed more than pure aggressive power. Will not break multiple tackles consistently throughout the game. Blocking is not evident in his game as well.
Quick and speedy WR that is best utilized on the move, especially in pre-snap motions. When he has the ball in his hands, he has the ability to make a defender miss in space, then explode up the field for a huge game. Runs clean and crisp routes in the slot or out at the boundary in a X or Z role. Smart player that recognizes coverages and can get open with his electric footwork in routes. A quick release off the LOS in press situations is evident in his game. Does not run with bulling power when engaging a tackler but does have some force. Coming over the middle to make a contested catch is present, but out jumping a DB in a 1 on 1 situation is too much of a challenge for this WR. There is special teams’ ability in his game as a returner in punt or kickoff situations. More aggressiveness and effort in blocking will need to improve because there were situations that could allow a fellow ball carrier to make a play.
Relies a lot more on his quick lateral agility and quick sudden movements to gain separation. Austin III had decent straight-line speed that grants him separation when running routes. His elusiveness shows greatly with the ball in his hands and can simply make defenders look silly in space. Austin III does not lack burst and has shown he can outrun the entire defense in a foot race. This is a WR that plays much smaller that wants to make plays with his speed and quickness in open space.
Route Tree Variety
Big Play Ability
When releasing off the LOS, his quick feet allow him to gain separation very quickly. When lined up in the Y receiver role or out as a boundary WR, he will beat press coverage with a shoulder dip and his strong hands. The timing and body control could be better when running intermediate routes. When attacking deep balls, a few did get away because of miss timing or not adjusting correctly. Route tree variety is pretty large. He can run almost any route in the route tree with ease. However, physical routes like jump ball fades in the red zone do not fit his forte. Routes such as slants, bumble screens, post, corners, and stop & go’s fit this WR much more.
High Points Ball
Does do good work with his hands, especially when making catches in traffic or close to the boundary. The ability to high point the ball does flash at times, but he cannot constantly out jump a defender for a jump ball. Not a huge catching radius because of his size but can make outreached grabs down the field.
Run After Catch
Aggressive burst when running with the ball after the catch. Anytime he has the ball in his hands, he is trying to go for six. A tough WR that is not afraid to go into the middle of the field to make a catch. Does have very good contact balance when engaging within contact. Arm tackles rarely bring him down. Ability in blocking certainly needs more work. Tends to show less effort in the run game.
This is a smart WR that knows how to get open and recognize the differences in coverages. Good instincts to know where to attack on a defensive back. A WR that can play out on the boundary, but his best work does come out of the slot. Movement in motion before the snap puts his team in good one-on-one matchups.