Don't look now, but The Conductor is tuning up the band on Rams D again

The LA Rams defense was led in quarterback sacks by rookie Kobie Turner, The Conductor, in 2023. And he is tuning up the band one more time for 2024. Stay tuned for some fun
Kobie Turner, Byron Young, Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams
Kobie Turner, Byron Young, Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams / Harry How/GettyImages
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The Conductor gets the band tuned up

Perhaps lost in the translation from that 2023 season is the miraculous production that this team found from rookies who were not highly regarded, nor selected early by other NFL teams. The Rams kicked over every stone in the effort to add not only talented players to this team, but passionate football players. Perhaps no pair of rookies in the 2023 NFL season displayed that passion line OLB Byron Young and NT Kobie Turner.

While both players were viewed as productive defensive standouts in college, neither player was highly regarded for the next chapter in their football careers. For OLB Byron Young, a young man who was once a manager at Dollar General, he was considered too old to warrant an early selection by an NFL team. For his teammate, nose tackle Kobie Turner, the skepticism arose from a player who was too short and too light to hold up to the physicality of playing nose tackle or even defensive tackle in the NFL.

And yet, both proved to be absolute steals, selected long after other NFL teams helped themselves to more conventional defensive prospects. And yet, Kobie Turner (9.0 quarterback sacks) and Byron Young (8.0 quarterback sacks) led the entire 2023 rookie class at bringing opposing quarterbacks down.

While the presence of All-Pro DT Aaron Donald certainly played a role in their excellence, that does not tell the entire story. Kobie Turner especially, a.k.a. The Conductor, had a lightning fast pass rush that allowed him to cause havoc in the opponent's backfield before the opposing quarterback could plant his feet, set and throw.

It was that express train pass rush that allowed Turner to become so deadly effective from an interior defensive lineman role, and perhaps allowed the Rams to strategize how to bolster the defensive front in 2024.