Rams WR Cooper Kupp Still Leads the NFL in 2 Categories

Cooper Kupp

Getty Cooper Kupp gets wrapped up by Marquise Blair of the Seahawks during the Thursday, October 7, road win for the Rams.

When Cooper Kupp got bottled to five catches for 64 yards in the 37-20 loss to the Arizona Cardinals in Week 4, it knocked the Los Angeles Rams wide receiver from leading the league in all three major receiving stats of receptions, yardage and touchdowns.

However, Kupp is still tops in two NFL categories.

As of Monday, October 11, Kupp is the league’s leading slot receiver in receptions and yards while lined up inside:

Kupp had a nice redemption game from Thursday, October 7, at Seattle: Catching seven passes on 10 targets for 92 yards and averaged 13.1 yards per catch — all an increase from that 17-point loss to the Cards.

The 28-year-old Kupp lines up in a variety of spots for the Rams, but he’s taken 126 total offensive snaps at the slot per Pro Football Focus.

Kupp vs. Slot Cornerbacks

Kupp is averaging five catches a game when lined up inside. He has 12 receptions outside of slot WR.

So how has he fared against slot CB’s? Here’s a dive into that via PFF:

  • Seattle: Kupp was covered by Marquise Blair and Ugo Amadi. Kupp was targeted a combined three times against both slot CB’s. He came away with two catches for 18 yards but got one first down on Amadi. Kupp earned his most yards against free safety Quandre Diggs (one catch for 33 yards) and weakside linebacker Jordyn Brooks (two catches for 32 yards).
  • Arizona: Kupp caught two throws against Bryon Murphy Jr. — tallying his most yards (44) against him in that loss.
  • Tampa Bay: Kupp lined up on 28 plays in the slot, but drew 10 different Buccaneer defenders in the 34-24 win. Carlton Davis and Dee Delaney struggled the most versus Kupp — the former surrendering two touchdown passes and the latter allowing the most yardage (39) when covering No. 10.
  • Indianapolis: The Colts’ Kenny Moore II was targeted the most against Kupp. He went on to surrender four catches on four targets for 82 yards and four first downs.
  • Chicago: Former Ram slot CB Marqui Christian wound up getting the most passes thrown his way when guarding Kupp. The Ram caught four passes on him through five targets and Kupp gained 83 of his 108 receiving yards versus Christian. And yes, Christian was one of the Bear defenders torched on that 56-yard TD by Kupp.

Overall, Kupp has gained his most receiving yardage over slot CB’s in four of the Rams’ first five games. Additionally, the deep center is where Kupp has been the most deadliest: Catching three passes on three targeted throws for 124 yards.

Kupp Has Added Selfless Side

Kupp isn’t just destroying coverages against slot CB’s.

He’s taken on larger, more physical defenders as a blocker — even taking on defensive ends with his 6-foot-2, 208-pound frame.

Here below, he sprung Darrell Henderson loose on this key run where he takes on Pro Bowl safety Jamal Adams:

But one thing that wasn’t heavily mentioned on Matthew Stafford’s first-ever Rams TD pass: It’s Kupp himself who sets the play up with this key block on the left side of the area where Stafford rolled out:

Kupp will now take on a New York Giants team that he’s never lost to in two meetings. The Giants will obviously look to figure out how to stop Kupp from the slot. But the team must also figure out if they want to go man on Kupp, considering this below:

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