Austin Pasztor’s NFL journey began on an asparagus farm in Langton, Ontario.
The work ethic developed by the 6-7, 308-pound Canadian on his family’s 100 acre farm translated into instant success on his Glendale High football team (near Tillsonburg).
His play at Glendale then earned him a spot on a travelling Canadian All Star team, a team that played an exhibition game against Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia prior to his senior year. Fort Union offered Pasztor a spot at the school, which then led to a scholarship at the University of Virginia.
After four seasons as a starter with the Cavaliers (Pasztor’s streak of consecutive starts reached 45 during his senior year) he was named a was named a second-team Associated Press All-American.
Despite being passed over in the 2012 NFL Draft Pasztor was signed as a free agent by the Minnesota Vikings. He was cut prior to the season, but found his way on to the Jaguars’ practice roster in 2013.
In late September he was named Jacksonville’s starting left tackle, and has started every game since (most recently against the San Francisco 49ers in London, England).
“I’m just trying to focus on each day and not look ahead to Sundays,’’ Pasztor told Jacksonville.com’s Vito Stellino.
As Stellino reported in a recent piece, Pasztor ‘was a face in the crowd during training camp, but won a backup job and played on special teams the first three games. He said he learned a good work ethic growing up on his family’s 100-acre farm.’
“What’s cool about Pasztor is that he comes to work every day with that lunch pail mentality, that grizzly kind of looking guy that just wants to hopefully get nasty and be able to play with a physical toughness about him,’’ Jaguars offensive coordinator Jeff Fisch told Stellino.
“He’s got to be an incredible 100 percent effort guy. It’s going to have to be every single snap, he has to be 100 percent. I think he knows that and recognizes that and he’s excited about the opportunity. The other part of him is he’s smart. He’s going to communicate well.’’
Stellino’s complete article on Pasztor’s rise can be found here: http://jacksonville.com/sports/football/jaguars/2013-10-03/story/jaguars-austin-pasztor-has-come-long-way-his-starter
Follow Austin Pasztor on twitter @APsixseven