Calvin Austin III has been a camp phenom with his speed, but the speed is now translating into an actual game. The speedy receiver out of Memphis burned Buccaneers cornerback Don Gardner for a 67-yard touchdown to register his first career touchdown reception.
Calvin Austin's speed is going to be a big difference maker as a field stretcher, beat the CB purely with it here. Also nice throw by Mason while getting hit. pic.twitter.com/Wm1ic7jU37
— Nick Martin (@themicknartin) August 12, 2023
He took a jet sweep earlier for a 17-yard gain and then another one for a six-yard gain. His explosiveness and speed have been easy to see from the moment he took the field. Mason Rudolph has tried to get the ball to Austin multiple times, and he was finally rewarded with a big play.
“It was all about stacking good days,” Austin said before the game. “That’s all I can really do when I come out here. So, trying to be consistent and make plays each day, that’s what I do. I think my speed adds something to the offense that can really be explosive.”
Calvin Austin III took the field for the first time in his NFL career as the Steelers preseason kicks off. Last year, he was electric during training camp, but never got to play in a game before a lisfranc injury would sideline him and end his season. He suffered that injury during a team walk-through in a freak injury. But with Diontae Johnson, George Pickens, and Allen Robinson II around, Austin is looking to be the guy that can complement that group with speed.
Wide receivers coach Frisman Jackson knows that Austin can be the game-breaker that the Steelers are looking for, both as a vertical field stretcher and as a guy who can do things on jet sweeps. The Steelers’ preseason games can vet what he can bring to the table in a live setting, but Jackson believes he has big things coming for him. It seems that so far, Austin is proving him right by making a number of splash plays so far.