Sean McVay gives game ball to “phenomenal” Johnny Hekker

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It’s not often that a punter could legitimately be described as a game’s most valuable player, but Johnny Hekker has a case for it after his Rams beat the Bears on Monday night.

Hekker averaged 44.2 yards per punt and, incredibly, landed all five of his punts inside the Bears’ 10-yard line, with none of them returned. His longest punt went 63 yards and was downed at the 6-yard line, and flipped the field at the one point in the game when it felt like the Bears were starting to get some momentum.

Rams coach Sean McVay said afterward that Hekker was a rare punter who got a game ball.

“He was phenomenal tonight. Exactly what we expect. Don’t ever take it for granted,” McVay said.

The 30-year-old Hekker is a four-time first-team All-Pro and is building a case that he’s the best punter in NFL history.