Puka Nacua was selected by the Los Angeles Rams in the 5th round of the 2023 NFL Draft. He was the 20th wide receiver selected throughout the process, and the third that was taken in the 5th round. But if he is able to keep up with his pace and average, then he won’t only be the most productive rookie wide receiver this season, he’ll be the most productive rookie wide receiver of all time.
Puka Nacua Can Break An NFL Rookie Record This Year
In 2012, Calvin Johnson set the NFL single season record with 1,964 receiving yards. His QB was Matthew Stafford.
In 2021, Cooper Kupp had the second most receiving yards in a single season in NFL history with 1,947. His QB was – and still is – Matthew Stafford.
Puka Nacua… pic.twitter.com/sg0whgea75
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 22, 2023
Nacua was a revelation from the start. He received a whopping 35 targets over the span of his first two games of the year, amassing over 500 yards over the first four. It was thought that his production would drop off when Cooper Kupp returned to the lineup, and while they have, Nacua is still about as big a part of the Rams’ offensive attack as he has been all year long.
In fact, Puka Nacua needs just 147 yards to break the NFL record for the most by a rookie wide receiver.
The overall record was set in 1960, when Bill Groman gained an incredible 1,473 yards in just 14 games for the Houston Oilers. And while that mark has been threatened, no one has ever exceeded it. In fact, two of the last three NFL seasons prior to the current one have seen receivers come within 73 and 18 yards of it in Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase.
74 Yard Average Will Achieve The Goal
Puka Nacua might be the best to ever do it pic.twitter.com/hSzlsv9ZH9
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) December 22, 2023
What does Nacua have to do to break the mark? Pretty much just be himself. He is averaging 88 yards per game this season, and the Rams have two contests lefts. Should he continue on his normal trajectory, he’ll finish with 1,563 and shatter Groman’s record. Their next game will come against the Giants in Week 17, who are ranked 19th in the NFL when it comes to receiving yards allowed. They’ll face the mighty 49ers in the final game of the year.
The Rams are currently one of the hottest teams in the NFL. After heading into their bye week at 3-6, Los Angeles has now won 5 out of their last 6 games to firmly plant themselves in the NFC playoff picture heading into the final two weekends of the year.