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No-brainer: Two Rams make PFF’s 2023 All-Rookie Team

There’s a very strong case that no team got more out of its rookie class this year than the Los Angeles Rams, especially when you consider none of their picks were in the first round. Steve Avila, Byron Young, Kobie Turner and Puka Nacua have all had a positive impact, as has punter Ethan Evans.

Their two best rookies, Turner and Nacua, are both strong candidates for Rookie of the Year awards – Turner on defense and Nacua on the offensive side. That’s why it’s hardly surprising that both players made Pro Football Focus’ All-Rookie Team for 2023.

Nacua was the top selection at wide receiver, alongside Rashee Rice and Tank Dell.

Nacua established himself as the biggest steal in the 2023 class, breaking the rookie reception and receiving yardage records. Nakua’s 1,486 receiving yards are fourth-most in the NFL while his 85.1 PFF receiving grade is tied for 12th.

Nacua is one of six receivers who posted a 99.9 deep receiving grade this season, and he led that group with five contested catches on such targets.

At defensive tackle, Turner got the nod next to Jalen Carter, who’s the favorite to win Defensive Rookie of the Year. Turner led the Rams with nine sacks this season and had just one fewer pressure than Carter, who led all rookie defensive tackles with 49.

Turner quietly almost matched Carter’s production as Aaron Donald’s sidekick in Los Angeles. His 83.8 overall PFF grade ties him for ninth-best among qualified defensive tackles, and he finished the regular season with 48 pressures, one less than Carter.

Tuner isn’t just a pass-rusher, though. He’s one of just three qualified defensive rookies who posted 70-plus grades in the pass rush and run defense.

Avila is a third Rams player who had a strong case to make PFF’s All-Rookie Team. Peter Skoronski was selected at left guard but he barely had a higher PFF grade than Avila (61.6 vs. 61.1).

Avila played every offensive snap for the Rams this season, 1,147 in total, and he allowed only two sacks compared to Skoronski’s five. His pass-blocking grade was also much better, 67.2 vs. 63.5, and they were even in the penalty department (two each).

Even getting two rookies highlighted by PFF is a big accomplishment for the Rams, whose rookie class is going to shape the future of this team.

Story originally appeared on Rams Wire