Baltimore Native Tavon Austin and His New "Cousins"

USA TODAY Sports

The realities of becoming a professional athlete are starting to set in for Rams' rookie Tavon Austin.

Making the jump from college star to top ten NFL Draft pick is no easy transition for any athlete. Baltimore native and Paul Laurence Dunbar High school alum, Tavon Austin, has a lot of adjustments to make in taking his game to the pro level with the St. Louis Rams. From learning a new pro-style offense to making the adjustment to an NFL locker room atmosphere, NFL rookies have plenty to deal with while at work. Austin, however, claims that the hardest thing for him is dealing with a newfound group of "friends".

In an interview with the Rams' official team site, Austin spoke out on the issue of dealing with old acquaintances pestering him for handouts, "I've got a lot of cousins now" , said Austin "The whole city of Baltimore is my cousin now we're just going to try to keep focused and let my mother handle it". He went on to vent his frustration over the situation, adding, "Everybody expects a lot of things from you as far as money. My phone doesn't stop ringing now, it feels like they're counting my bank account." One can only imagine how frustrating it can be for a young man to be constantly nagged by estranged friends for gifts and handouts. It is a real issue that almost all rookies have to deal with, yet it is not often discussed maybe as much as it should be. So, come on Baltimore, leave the man alone.

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