If you have been following the Dallas Cowboys for awhile, you might remember what happened on October 11, 2009 during a game between the Cowboys and the Kansas City Chiefs. Former Cowboys receiver Roy Williams was out due to a rib injury and backup Cowboys receiver Miles Austin would make his first NFL start. To that point, most knew him as an average back up that had flashes of brilliance. But, not enough to make you think he was a true number one receiver in the league. Then the game started and another undrafted free agent made his claim for fame.
Austin had broken the Cowboys receiving record held by former wide out Bob Hayes by catching 10 passes for 250 yards receiving. He also added two touchdowns, one for 60-yards to win the game in overtime. A star was born and Austin earned him a spot as a starting wide-out that year. To prove it wasn’t a fluke, Austin went on to a pro bowl year with 1320 yards receiving and 11 touchdowns.
It’s 2013 and the Miles Austin that we saw in 2009 has all but disappeared. We see him now and again, like we did in week one, but the chronic hamstring injuries and underwhelming performances has created animosity towards Austin. Now, with the emergence of Cowboys receivers Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley, and Dwayne Harris, it seems more likely that Austin will be cut after this year in a cap cutting move.
Now, I support the decision to cut Austin in the off-season for many reasons. The team needs to get younger in areas and he costs too much money when you get the same production from cheaper options. But, I don’t support benching Austin completely this year just because Williams and the other receivers have started to play better. Austin still has a role on this team and can help make this a dangerous offense.