No one could have predicted that Puka Nacua would be the best wide receiver in the 2023 class after being drafted in the fifth round, yet that’s exactly what he’s been through seven games. In fact, he’s already emerged as one of the most productive receivers in the league, regardless of draft class.
He leads the NFL with 58 receptions, ranks third in yards (752) and has been targeted four more times than any other player (82).
When it comes to just the 2023 draft class, Nacua is miles ahead of every other receiver. His 752 receiving yards are 310 more than the next-closest player, Zay Flowers of the Baltimore Ravens, who has 442 yards on 39 receptions.
Here are the top five rookies in receiving yards, which includes tight end Sam LaPorta:
Puka Nacua: 752 yards (58 receptions)
Zay Flowers: 442 yards (39 receptions)
Josh Downs: 401 yards (33 receptions)
Jordan Addison: 400 yards (29 receptions)
Sam LaPorta: 377 yards (35 receptions)
Nacua is currently on pace to finish the season with 141 catches, 1,825 yards and about five touchdowns. Whether he’s able to sustain that pace with Cooper Kupp back remains to be seen, but he did just have eight catches for 154 yards in the Rams’ loss to the Steelers on Sunday, so there’s still room for both receivers on offense.