The Impressive Start of Rams Rookie Puka Nacua
Yes, it’s only two games, but the Los Angeles Rams have witnessed one of the strongest starts in league history for a rookie wide receiver. Puka Nacua, the fifth rounder out of BYU, leads seven different Pro Bowl wide receivers in various categories. Let’s take a closer look at who Nacua is leading and in what categories.
Nacua isn’t just the league’s leading wide receiver, his 25 catches put him ahead of three different Pro Bowlers in the top five — Justin Jefferson of the Minnesota Vikings, Stefon Diggs of the Buffalo Bills, and Tyreek Hill of the Miami Dolphins.
While he trails Jefferson’s 309 yards, Nacua’s 266 put him ahead of Hill, Mike Evans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, CeeDee Lamb of the Dallas Cowboys, and other notable wide receivers in the top 10 for 2023 receiving yards.
Nacua has caught 13 passes that have given the Rams first downs. That’s more than other notable wide receivers like Lamb, Davante Adams of the Las Vegas Raiders, and Diggs.
Average Yards Per Game
Nacua is second in the league at averaging 133 yards per game. That’s more than Hill, Evans, and Lamb’s average.
Yards After Catch
This is where Nacua has proven he fits the Rams. He leads all NFL wide receivers with 111 yards after the catch, surpassing the likes of Lamb and Jefferson.
For those who have been following Nacua’s performance, it’s clear that he has outplayed several Pro Bowl wideouts so far. But can he continue this level of production?
Could Nacua’s Fast Start Get Disrupted?
Nacus has played a significant part in reinvigorating the Rams offense. Even without the return of Cooper Kupp, the Rams have averaged 26.5 points per game on offense and have led all NFC teams with an average of 406 yards per game.
However, fans are likely wondering what will happen when Kupp returns in October. Will this mean a decrease in production for Nacua? Time will tell. Regardless, Nacua has proven to be a valuable asset to the Rams’ offensive improvement in 2023.
Lorenzo Reyna covers the Los Angeles Rams and Alabama Crimson Tide for Heavy.com. His NFL, college, and high school football coverage have been featured on Pro Football Network, Santa Maria Times, Daily Pilot, 24/7 Sports, and Scout Media.