Los Angeles Rams rookie defensive tackle Kobie Turner was named as a finalist for AP Defensive Rookie of the Year. The other finalists along with Turner are Houston Texans defensive end Will Anderson Jr., Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Jalen Carter, Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joey Porter Jr. and Seattle Seahawks cornerback Devon Witherspoon.
A third-round pick out of Wake Forest, Turner went under the radar for much of the season with many not recognizing the impact he was having for the Rams as they pushed towards a playoff spot. But he finally got the love he deserved near the end of the season, making a late push for the award.
Turner led all rookies in sacks with nine, while also finishing the year with 57 total tackles, 16 quarterback hits and eight tackles for loss. He combined with Rams star Aaron Donald to form one of the most devastating interior linemen duos in the entire NFL and looks like a core piece of the Rams for years to come.
Turner’s first big breakout game came in Week 9 against the Green Bay Packers when he had 10 total tackles and a sack, the first full one of his career. Just a couple weeks later, Turner would have his first multi-sack game with two, along with four tackles, in a win over the Arizona Cardinals.
Perhaps his most dominant performance came in Week 17 against the New York Giants when he was an absolute force. Turner finished with five total tackles, 2.5 sacks, three quarterback hits and two tackles for loss as the Rams clinched their berth in the postseason.
Turner is facing some tough competition to bring home the award, however. The Texans’ Anderson led all rookies with 22 quarterback hits to go along with 45 total tackles, 10 tackles for loss and seven sacks. Carter, meanwhile, finished the year with 33 tackles, nine quarterback hits, eight tackles for loss, and six sacks for the Eagles.
Witherspoon already looks to be one of the best young cornerbacks as he finished an impressive rookie season with 79 total tackles, 16 passes defensed, one forced fumble and one interception, which was returned 97 yards for a touchdown. Porter was also great for the Steelers with 43 total tackles, 10 passes defensed and one interception.
This season brought some impactful rookies on both sides of the ball, and despite not being highly touted coming into the league, Turner is already making a big imprint.
Rams Puka Nacua named finalist for AP Offensive Rookie of the Year
Kobie Turner was joined by his fellow Rams rookie Puka Nacua as a finalist for a rookie of the year award.
The fifth-round wide receiver was named a finalist for the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year award after breaking the NFL rookie records for receptions and receiving yards.
This simply shows that the Rams have a potential franchise-altering draft class on their hands with some immediate impact players on both sides.