One of the breakout stars of the 2023 NFL season has been Los Angeles Rams wide receiver, Puka Nacua. The fifth-round pick out of BYU took the league by storm when he stepped into the starting lineup for an injured Cooper Kupp at the onset of the season.
Kupp was dealing with a hamstring injury from training camp that resulted in landing on injured reserve. The passing offense didn’t miss a beat as Nacua filled Kupp’s spot in the lineup flawlessly.
Nacua has been breaking records all season, and in Week 9 against the Green Bay Packers, he set another one. The 64 receptions which he has is already the most for a rookie in Rams franchise history. He broke the record Kupp set in 2017.
It is truly incredible that Nacua broke a season-long record in only nine games. But, he is far from done re-writing the Rams and NFL record books. The next one in his sights is the receiving yards record for a rookie.
That record is currently held by Eddie Kennison, who set the record in 1996 when the franchise was in St. Louis. Kennison recorded 924 yards that season. Barring unforeseen circumstances, Nacua is going to blow that record out of the water as well as he already has 827 receiving yards on the season.
Beyond the Rams’ franchise records, Nacua has a chance to take down some league records as well. Jaylen Waddle of the Miami Dolphins has the current high mark for receptions with 104; Nacua is on pace to shatter that with 121.
The receiving yards record is currently held by Bill Groman. He set the mark in 1960 with the Houston Oilers, recording 1,473 yards. That record is likely the safest of any, as Nacua has seen his production take a hit with Kupp healthy and back in the lineup.
If not for Houston Texans quarterback C.J. Stroud, who is setting passing records of his own, Nacua would be a runaway favorite for the 2023 Offensive Rookie of the Year award.