Akers is aiming to make "big strides" this offseason after making a quicker than expected recovery from a torn Achilles suffered last July, Greg Beacham of the Associated Press reports.
Analysis: Despite picking up the serious injury just before training camp, Akers was given a chance to return at some point during the 2021 campaign when the Rams opted to place him on the reserve/non-football injury list on Aug. 31 versus injured reserve, the latter of which would have made him ineligible to play. He eventually was activated prior to Week 16 and made his season debut Week 18, and during the Rams' run to a Super Bowl LVI victory he served as the team's primary running back. In those five games, though, Akers averaged just 2.4 yards on his 72 carries, corralled 11 of 13 passes for 86 yards and didn't score a touchdown. During Thursday's media appearance, he relayed, "I wouldn't say I did well. ... I did what I was supposed to do, but obviously that's not enough for me." As he puts the injury further in the rearview mirror, the soon-to-be 23-year-old (in June) will look to fulfill his standing as a 2020 second-round pick, with his primary competition Darrell Henderson, a three-year pro.
Apr 21, 2022 3:18 PM EST
Akers rushed 13 times for 21 yards and brought in three of four targets for 14 yards during the Rams' 23-20 win over the Bengals in Super Bowl LVI on Sunday.
Analysis: Akers comfortably paced the backfield in carries even with Darrell Henderson making his return from injured reserve, but as was the case most of the postseason, he found running room very much at a premium. The second-year back nearly outpaced his rushing yardage total through the air on just three touches, underscoring the tough sledding he encountered on the ground. Naturally, the Super Bowl win for his team is the ultimate consolation, and Akers could also certainly be heartened by the fact he made a very rapid recovery from the Achilles tear he suffered in July. With a full offseason to get back to full strength ahead of him, the FSU product will undoubtedly aim for a major comeback effort in the Rams' 2022 title-defense season.
Feb 13, 2022 8:04 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) practiced fully Thursday, Brady Henderson of ESPN.com reports.
Analysis: After not practicing at all last week, Akers has ramped up his activity level in short order this week, going from limited at Wednesday's walkthrough to all drills one day later. As a result, the Rams have their top two running backs -- also, Sony Michel -- ready for a Super Bowl LVI matchup with the Bengals. The question mark that remains in Los Angeles' backfield is the status of Darrell Henderson (knee), whose window to return from injured reserve is about to close. Fortunately, coach Sean McVay expressed optimism earlier this week that Henderson has a "good chance" to be available Sunday, per Stu Jackson of the team's official site. In the end, though, Akers should get the larger share of touches among the trio, with Michel and potentially Henderson mixing in behind him.
Feb 10, 2022 3:47 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) was a limited participant at Wednesday's walkthrough, Brady Henderson of ESPN.com reports.
Analysis: Akers didn't practice at all during the first week of prep for Super Bowl LVI, so Wednesday's development displays a degree of progress from the shoulder injury that he suffered during the NFC Championship Game on Jan. 30. In three playoff games (including two starts) during the Rams' current run, he's averaged 2.8 yards on 54 carries and hauled in five of six targets for 62 yards. During that same stretch, fellow running back Sony Michel has averaged 3.3 yards on 24 rushes while combining for minus-8 yards on three catches. Akers' progress in L.A.'s final two sessions of the week likely will determine whether he enters the weekend with a designation for Sunday's contest against the Bengals.
Feb 9, 2022 4:24 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) appears to be absent from a third straight practice Friday, but Rams coach Sean McVay suggested he expects the running back to play in the Super Bowl against Cincinnati, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: While the Rams list eight players on their injury report this week, McVay suggested only one guy -- TE Tyler Higbee (knee) -- is in serious danger of missing the big game. It'll be cause for concern if Akers continues to miss practice next week, though it sounds like the Rams expect him to return. There is some chance of a reduced role compared to the past few weeks, as Akers hasn't had much luck running the ball, and Darrell Henderson (knee) could come back from IR for the Super Bowl (he was suited up for practice Friday, per Rodrigue).
Feb 4, 2022 12:47 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) didn't participate in Thursday's walkthrough, Brady Henderson of ESPN.com reports.
Analysis: Akers has yet to practice this week since sustaining a shoulder injury during the Rams' win in the NFC Championship Game against the 49ers, but he also has more than a week to get healthy ahead of a Super Bowl matchup with the Bengals. He played through the issue this past Sunday, turning 14 touches into 50 yards from scrimmage. Meanwhile, fellow running back Sony Michel couldn't find much traction to the tune of 12 total yards on 11 touches. Akers will have four more chances to mix into drills before L.A. next takes the field on Sunday, Feb. 13.
Feb 3, 2022 2:22 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) was listed as a non-participant on Wednesday's estimated practice report, Charlie Goldsmith of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
Analysis: Akers missed a spell in the first half of the Rams' recent win in the NFC Championship Game against the 49ers due to a shoulder injury, resulting in his second-lowest share of offensive snaps (39 percent) since returning from a July Achilles tear back in Week 18. Still, he was far more efficient than backfield mate Sony Michel, taking 14 touches for 50 yards from scrimmage versus the latter's 11 touches for 12 total yards on 57 percent of those plays. The Rams likely are easing Akers into preparation for a Super Bowl matchup with the Bengals on Sunday, Feb. 13, but his status will be one to monitor to make sure L.A.'s top RB is set to play in the season finale.
Feb 2, 2022 4:06 PM EST
Akers rushed 13 times for 48 yards and brought in his only target for two yards during the Rams' 20-17 win over the 49ers in their NFC Championship Game on Sunday.
Analysis: Akers navigated a shoulder injury that led to a brief exit from the contest in the first half, and although his final yardage total was nothing to write home about, he was more efficient than during a difficult divisional-round performance against the Buccaneers. The second-year back fumbled twice in that game and was also held to 2.0 yards per carry, while Sunday's performance saw him at least average a slightly more palatable 3.7 per tote and not turn the ball over. Akers did outpace Sony Michel by only three carries, but that was partly the byproduct of the former's aforementioned temporary in-game absence. Given Akers is arguably the more explosive back of the two, it's likely he maintains a lead-back role in the Super Bowl LVI matchup versus the Bengals on Feb. 13.
Jan 30, 2022 7:22 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) has returned to Sunday's NFC Championship Game against the 49ers, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Akers hurt his shoulder in the first half but gained clearance to return prior to halftime. He'll return to a leading role in the Los Angeles backfield.
Jan 30, 2022 4:49 PM EST
Akers (shoulder) is questionable to return to Sunday's game against San Francisco, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Akers went to the locker room to have the injury examined after rushing six times for 31 yards and adding a two-yard catch in the NFC Championship Game. Sony Michel will take over as the Rams' leading backfield option in Akers' absence.
Jan 30, 2022 4:23 PM EST
Akers ran 24 times for 48 yards and caught all three targets for 20 yards Sunday. He lost two fumbles in an eventual 30-27 win over the Bucs.
Analysis: Akers was finally given the keys to the Rams backfield, but the end results were not what many were expecting. The Buccaneers do boast one of the premier rush defenses in the league -- spearheaded by dominant nose tackle Vita Vea -- so that should be factored into the rough go of things under a national spotlight. Sony Michel finished with just one carry for four yards, so it appears that Sean McVay was the superior option to use in this particular matchup. The 49ers' rush defense is no slouch either, but Akers figures to find a bit of relief in next week's matchup after posting a total dud.
Jan 23, 2022 4:53 PM EST
Akers rushed 17 times for 55 yards in Monday night's 34-11 wild-card round win over the Cardinals. He also caught one of two targets for 40 yards.
Analysis: Akers entered the game behind Sony Michel but went on to lead the Rams in carries, adding some elusiveness to Michel's power-based style. Although he wasn't particularly efficient with his rushes overall, Akers made a big play in the passing game, hauling in a trick-play throw from wideout Odell Beckham during the second half. With nearly 20 touches and 100 scrimmage yards in just his second game back from an Achilles injury, Akers' importance is growing ahead of Sunday's NFC divisional-round matchup versus the Buccaneers.
Jan 17, 2022 9:25 PM EST
Akers (Achilles) rushed five times for three yards and caught all three targets for 10 yards in Sunday's 27-24 overtime loss to the 49ers.
Analysis: Akers made his 2021 debut in Week 18 after missing practically the entirety of the regular season with an Achilles injury. The 21-year-old was eased back into action with just eight total touches while Sony Michel (21-43-0) retained his lead back role. Akers is more versatile of an asset and provides more upside than the current veteran starter, so it wouldn't be surprising to see Akers carve out a larger role -- assuming good health -- in what is sure to be a showdown between the Rams and Cardinals in the first round of the playoffs.
Jan 9, 2022 8:35 PM EST
Akers (Achilles) is active for Sunday's game against the 49ers.
Analysis: The 22-year-old was activated from injured reserve Dec. 25 and was inactive for the past two games, but he'll make his season debut after recovering from the Achilles injury in July. Sony Michel is expected to lead the Rams' backfield again Sunday, and Akers is set to be eased in before potentially taking on a larger workload in the playoffs.
Jan 9, 2022 12:22 PM EST
Akers (Achilles) is in line to make his season debut Sunday against the 49ers, though he's expected to handle only a limited role, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Analysis: The Rams activated Akers from injured reserve Dec. 25, but he's been inactive for both of the past two contests after being listed as questionable in advance of both games. After another week of full practices, however, Akers entered the regular-season finale without a designation, putting him on track to make his season debut following his recovery from the torn Achilles' tendon he suffered in mid-July. Though Akers finished his rookie campaign as the Rams' lead back, he's expected to be eased back into the mix as the top change-of-pace option behind Sony Michel, who is averaging 4.6 yards per carry since stepping into the top role Week 13. Akers' opportunities are expected to increase during the Rams' upcoming playoff run, though if Michel continues to shine as a ballcarrier, Akers may end up seeing most of his snaps on passing downs.
Jan 9, 2022 5:17 AM EST
Akers (Achilles) practiced in full Wednesday, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: In the lead up to this past Sunday's game at Baltimore, Akers also was uninhibited in practice before the Rams deemed him inactive. But coach Sean McVay has laid the groundwork for Akers to return to action Week 18 following a far quicker than anticipated recovery from a mid-July Achilles tear. On Monday, McVay told J.B. Long of the Los Angeles Rams Radio Network, "I think he's ready." McVay went even further Wednesday, telling Stu Jackson of the team's official site that Akers participated in the jog-through session and "was full speed, flying around. ... He'll be ready to go (Sunday against the 49ers)." What kind of workload Akers handles remains to be seen, but assuming he's active he'll be spelling Sony Michel, who has averaged 23.4 touches per game over the last five contests.
Jan 5, 2022 3:37 PM EST
Coach Sean McVay relayed Monday that he expects Akers (Achilles) to make his season debut Sunday against the 49ers, J.B. Long of the Los Angeles Rams Radio Network reports. "I think you let him go," McVay said. "I think he's ready."
Analysis: Since the Rams activated Akers from the reserve/non-football injury list on Dec. 25, he's been ramping up for his first game action since suffering a torn Achilles in mid-July. He was inactive for back-to-back contests while doing so, but McVay now appears comfortable getting Akers back in the mix. How much work Akers may be able to handle remains to be seen, especially with Sony Michel coming off a fifth consecutive outing with at least 79 yards from scrimmage. More than likely, Akers will handle a complementary role Week 18 and into the playoffs, assuming he's available to L.A.'s offense.
Jan 3, 2022 5:38 PM EST
Akers (Achilles) is inactive for Sunday's game against the Ravens, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Even though Akers was listed as questionable despite being a full participant in practices Wednesday through Friday, head coach Sean McVay made it clear heading into the weekend that the running back wasn't in line to make his season debut. Since being restored to the 53-man roster Dec. 25, Akers has now been inactive for two straight games, but he hasn't experienced any reported setbacks in his recovery from the surgery he underwent in July to address a torn Achilles' tendon. McVay indicated that Akers will likely be cleared to play in the Jan. 9 regular-season finale versus the 49ers, though the 22-year-old may not fill a major role behind lead back Sony Michel.
Jan 2, 2022 9:02 AM EST
Akers (Achilles), who is officially listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Ravens, will not play, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Analysis: This isn't surprising as head coach Sean McVay said Friday that the running back is unlikely to make his season debut. The Rams intend to take a cautious approach with the 2020 second-round pick as he works his way back from an Achilles tear suffered in mid-July. Akers has been practicing for just over a week now and hasn't experienced any setbacks, but the Rams aren't likely to give him his first snaps of the season until the Jan. 9 regular-season finale versus the 49ers.
Jan 1, 2022 10:44 PM EST
Akers (Achilles) is officially listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Ravens, though head coach Sean McVay said earlier Friday that the running back is unlikely to make his season debut, Kevin Modesti of the Los Angeles Daily News reports.
Analysis: With Darrell Henderson (knee) moving to injured reserve earlier this week, the Rams are left with Akers, Jake Funk and Buddy Howell as the lone backup options on the 53-man roster behind lead back Sony Michel. Akers could eventually challenge Michel for that role, but any changing of the guard is unlikely to come until the postseason or 2022, as the Rams intend to take a cautious approach with the 2020 second-round pick as he works his way back from an Achilles tear suffered in mid-July. Akers has been practicing for just over a week now and hasn't experienced any setbacks, but the Rams aren't likely to give him his first snaps of the season until the Jan. 9 regular-season finale versus the 49ers.
Dec 31, 2021 2:41 PM EST
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