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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Cameron DaSilva

Rams’ 23 most important players for 2023 – No. 3: WR Cooper Kupp

There was no denying Cooper Kupp earned a spot among the best receivers in the NFL after his historic 2021 season. And even though he followed it up with a fantastic nine games in 2022, he’s gotten overlooked a little bit because he got hurt last year.

Heading into the upcoming season, Kupp remains one of the Rams’ most important players. He’s right up there with Aaron Donald and Matthew Stafford, providing immense value on offense as a receiver, blocker and overall playmaker.

2022 stats

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
  • 9 games
  • 98 targets, 75 catches, 812 yards, 6 TDs
  • 1 drop
  • 105.8 passer rating when targeted

Position group

(AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)

Kupp’s position on the depth chart isn’t threatened one bit. He’s among the 10 best receivers in the NFL entering 2023, even after missing eight games last season with an ankle injury. Van Jefferson is projected to be the No. 2 receiver opposite Kupp, with the third option still to be determined in a group of receivers that consists of Tutu Atwell, Ben Skowronek, Puka Nacua, Demarcus Robinson and Tyler Johnson.

It’s actually a relatively deep group of receivers in Los Angeles, despite the lack of a true No. 2 or 3 receiver. Jefferson will get his biggest opportunity yet now that there’s no one blocking him from being the No. 2 receiver, while Atwell also has a path to playing time in 2023.

It’s a group with a nice variety of talent, too. Atwell is the burner, Skowronek is the blocker and the other receivers are pretty well-rounded.

2023 outlook

(AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)

If Kupp can stay healthy, he’s going to put up huge numbers. He was on track to have another massive season in 2022 before getting hurt, showing his historic 2021 season wasn’t a one-year fluke.

Kupp is going to see a ton of targets from Stafford and given his sure hands, he’s going to catch at least 100 passes with a good volume of opportunities. You can bet he wants to prove he’s still one of the best wideouts in football after getting overlooked a bit last year from his injury-shortened season.

The Rams desperately need Kupp to stay healthy because without him, they don’t have another receiver capable of being the No. 1 option. The offense goes through Kupp in multiple ways, from his catching skills to his blocking ability in the running game, too.

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