Rams News: LA's Most Important Non-Quarterback Identified

Where can LA improve before the season starts?
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The Los Angeles Rams enter the 2024 season ready to improve on the surprise playoff run from a year ago. They are bringing back a similar team, minus All-Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald who retired this offseason.

However, Los Angeles did add some extra talent along the roster as well. They have put themselves into a good position to be competitive in the NFC again this season but will need their stars to step up.

Adam Rank of NFL.com listed the most important member of the Rams this season, other than quarterback Matthew Stafford. He mentioned wide receiver Puka Nacua, who broke all sorts of records last season as a rookie.

"Nacua (who was mentioned in this space last year) was an absolute godsend for the Rams last season. Cooper Kupp had a down season, missing the first four games of the year, and the rookie out of BYU stepped up big time. Nacua posted five games with at least 150 scrimmage yards, the most such games by a rookie during the Super Bowl era. He also logged seven games with 100-plus receiving yards and was a finalist for Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. And, of course, he set new NFL records for receptions (105) and receiving yards (1,486) by a rookie. It felt like the playoff loss to the Lions marked the passing of the torch, with Nacua logging 181 receiving yards and a touchdown, dwarfing Kupp's five catches for 27 yards, like when Torry Holt passed Isaac Bruce back in the day (not that you're old enough to remember that). Kupp will still factor into the mix, but it's Puka time now".

If Nacua can produce similar to how he did last season, the Rams will again have one of the better offenses in the entire league. He will need to show that he can do it again at this level, otherwise, his rookie year will be seen as nothing more than a flash in the plan.

Nacua has all the talent to make it happen for the Rams again but the team will be heavily relying on him this year. He is no longer coming out of nowhere and teams will be scheming against him all season long.

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Matt Levine

MATT LEVINE