The St. Louis Rams announced Friday that P Johnny Hekker, who is tied for the NFL lead in completion percentage this season, has signed a six-year extension that will keep him with the team through the 2020 season. Prior to signing the new deal, Hekker was scheduled to become a restricted free agent at the end of the 2014 campaign.
In three seasons with the Rams, Hekker has become one of the NFL’s top special teams players, both with his foot and his arm. He earned All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors following the 2013 season after setting an NFL single-season record for net punting average in a season (44.2).
Hekker’s career net average of 41.9 yards per punt is the third best in the NFL since he arrived in 2012, and opponents are averaging just 6.7 yards per return against him, which is the second lowest in that time frame. This season, Hekker’s 41.4 net average ranks sixth in the NFL.
The Rams have regularly taken advantage of Hekker’s ability as a passer. The former high school quarterback has completed five of his six career passes. Each of his completions have resulted in successful fakes, one of which went for a touchdown in a 2012 win over Seattle. Hekker is 2-for-2 passing this season, and he boasts a perfect career passer rating (158.3).
A native of Bothell, Wash., Hekker joined the Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2012 following a standout career at Oregon State University.