When it comes to awards for NFL performances, perhaps no honor is more difficult to earn than the Offensve and Defensive Rookie of the Year honors. That is due to the fact that all NFL players have just one shot at earning a spot in the conversation, and the best of the best earn the honors. Well, in theory anyway.
While we love to look at statistics and individual performances, believing that everyone sees what we are seeing, that is not always the case. In 2021, despite setting All-Time Rams Franchise Receiver Records, while nearly breaking the All-Time NFL Single Season Receiver Records, WR Cooper Kupp did not win an NFL MVP award. That honor went to a quarterback, Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers had a good season, but it did not set any records.
But rookie performances ought to be different, right? I mean, the best rookie performances ought to open the door for ROY consideration. But even after an incredible Week 17 performance, that does not seem to be the case for Rams stellar rookie nose tackle Kobie Turner:
And yet, Kobie Turner has not even appeared in the discussion for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year conversations, and some folks are starting to notice, and call out the NFL for it:
The fact that LA Rams DL Coach Eric Henderson has to call out the NFL for completely ignoring Kobie Turner, a guy who just tied All-Pro DL Aaron Donald's rookie total of 9.0 quarterback sacks, with one game left on the schedule, is shameful. Turner has been leading the rookie class of 2023 in practically all statistics, which is how the nominations for the award ought to be determined.
Both former LA Rams OT Andrew Whitworth and DL Coach Eric Henderson are strongly endorsing Kobie Turner right now on social media:
Of course, All-Pro Aaron Donald knows excellence when he sees it. And when a young rookie in the Rams defense ascends to Aaron Donald's level of excellence, you can bet that the GOAT has something to say on the topic.
Even Good Morning Football host Peter Schrager is pushing for the NFL to recognize LA Rams NT Kobie Turner for the NFL DROY award:
So what does Kobie Turner himself have to say about all of this? He is as humble as they come, which is particularly endearing to witness considering all of the veterans who had come before him who leveraged a great season playing alongside Aaron Donald into a huge and lucrative contract:
I don't have a vote on the matter. But, if I did, my vote would be cast hands down for Rams NT Kobie Turner. Not only is he the best of the bunch from the rookie class of 2023, but with 9.0 quarterback sacks to his name this season, that translates into The Conductor winning the race to an opposing NFL quarterback nine times over Aaron Donald.
Kobie Turner has done nothing but excel in the NFL in his rookie season. If you have a social media account, be sure to mention Kobie Turner, a.k.a The Conductor, for the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.
After all he has done for the LA Rams, we Rams fans owe him that much in return.