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Rams coach McVay tips Nacua for OROY honours after Saints win

Sean McVay tipped Puka Nacua to claim the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year award after the wide receiver helped the Los Angeles Rams continue their playoff charge with a 30-22 win over the New Orleans Saints.

Nacua managed nine catches for 164 yards and a touchdown as the Rams clinched their fifth victory in the space of six games, taking him to 1,327 receiving yards in his first season in the league.

The 22-year-old now needs just 147 receiving yards across the Rams’ final two games of the regular season – against the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers – to have the most by any rookie in NFL history.

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Those numbers have led some to put him forward as a potential rival to Houston Texans quarterback C.J. Stroud in the Offensive Rookie of the Year conversation, and he would get his own head coach’s vote.

“He’s really special,” McVay said of Nacua. “But the best part about him is, he doesn’t worry about those things.

“He worries about just being a great team-mate, continuing to improve his game. I sure love this team, and he’s one of those guys that you really love.”

Asked about the potential battle between Stroud and Nacua, McVay said the Texans rookie was having a “great year” but added Nacua “would get my vote.”

Nacua himself, meanwhile, is focusing solely on helping the Rams reach the postseason, with their 8-7 record putting them in line for the NFC’s sixth seed ahead of the weekend’s games.

Asked about being touted for individual honours, he said: “I think it is cool. It’s funny when my family sends me stuff, but I guess it’s not my main goal.

“It’s been fun to be a part of every football game that we’ve been playing in since we’ve been able to come back from the bye.

“What coach has been preaching is; these games that we’re playing in December, the playoffs have already begun for us.

“To be in that playoff mindset already has been fun. It’s definitely something I’m not used to, though. We’re playing late into December, so finding ways to adjust to that. But it’s been super fun.”

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