Motion creating running lanes for Rams
Sending Nacua in motion can empty the box against the run. It worked brilliantly against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 6, per Nate Tice of The Athletic.
As the first play shows, Cards' linebacker Kyzir White (7) began to shift in the direction Nacua ran behind the line of scrimmage. It left room for Rams' running back Kyren Williams to attack the void on a trademark cutback run.
The second play Tice highlighted shows how motion allows Nacua to get a running start before exploding through a gap as an effective lead blocker. He put all 205 pounds into knocking safety K'Von Wallace (22) out of Williams' path.
Whether it's reducing run fronts or adding an extra blocker, motion is helping the Rams win the numbers game to run the ball.
Two simple concepts have expanded the Rams' offense in so many ways. It's the main reason the team has performed above expectations and returned to the postseason.
The LA Rams played Puka Nacua in Week 18 just long enough to break NFL records. But don't think for a minute that the San Francisco 49ers were okay with letting a Rams player set a record against their defense. They were more than happy to double up Nacua in a game that meant nothing to their postseason chances.
The NFL receiving record was not earned by longevity in 2023. Puka Nacua had to work for each reception and for each receiving yard. That was particularly true all the way through the 2023 NFL season.
And yet, he did break the record all the same.