Rams News: Aaron Donald Makes Case For Kobie Turner To Win Defensive Rookie Of The Year

Originally published by RamsNewswire.com

Much of the focus on Los Angeles Rams’ rookies has been on outstanding wide receiver Puka Nacua. But the Rams have another rookie greatly deserving of praise in third-round defensive tackle Kobie Turner and superstar Aaron Donald believes he deserves some hardware for his performance this season.

The world has finally took notice of Turner as his betting odds for Defensive Rookie of the Year blew up basically overnight and he now finds himself with the third best odds in the league behind Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Jalen Carter and Houston Texans defensive end Will Anderson Jr.

But in the eyes of his Rams teammate Donald, it is clearly Turner who should be taking home that award.

“Yeah, I think he’s just a productive guy when you talk about playing a run stout, making tackles for loss, he does that, putting pressure on the quarterback and affecting the quarterback, he does that, making sacks, he does that,” Donald said.

“So I think it’s kind of a no-brainer type of thing, right? He’s just been playing some good football for us, making a lot of plays and it’s one of the things that when you put the body of work in and you deserve certain things and that’s something that I feel like he deserves so you just got to keep working.”

Turner certainly has the numbers to support his case, as Donald pointed out. His nine sacks are tied for the rookie record for a defensive tackle since 2012, held of course by Donald himself, and is more than both Anderson and Carter. Additionally, his 57 tackles are more than both as well and Turner also has eight tackles for loss and 15 quarterback hits, though Anderson holds the edge on those two categories.

And while some may point to Turner playing next to Donald as opening up opportunities for himself, the latter had a retort.

“Well, that’s what he’s supposed to do,” the Rams star added. “You get the one-on-one opportunity, that’s what it’s for.

“If somebody wants to focus on one guy, the next guy is supposed to step up and make plays and he’s been doing that so he’s just doing his job like he’s supposed to do it at a high level. He’s just got to keep working, continue to get better, not be satisfied. But right now he’s having a pretty good season so I’m proud of him but like I said, still got a lot more work to do.”

It is hard to argue with Donald’s point as Turner is simply taking advantage of the gravity that Donald draws and that should not be held against him. It looks like it will be a close race, but one last strong showing from Turner in the Rams’ regular season finale could push him over the hump to getting that award.

Aaron Donald among Rams players sitting out in Week 18

If Turner is gonna break Donald’s record then he will have to do it without the future Hall of Famer playing next to him. With the Rams already having clinched a postseason berth, Sean McVay is choosing to rest some key players in Week 18 against the San Francisco 49ers and Donald is one of them.

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