Rams running back Cam Akers is inactive for Sunday’s game against the San Francisco 49ers, the latest turn in a saga that dates to last season.
Akers, a fourth-year pro, was exiled by coach Sean McVay for part of last season because of apparent disagreements about Akers’ role. The Rams attempted to trade Akers, but he returned to the team and finished strong, eclipsing more than 100 yards rushing in each of the last three games.
Akers started last Sunday’s opener against the Seattle Seahawks, but gained only 27 yards and scored a touchdown in 22 carries in the 30-13 victory.
Second-year pro Kyren Williams rushed for 52 yards and two touchdowns in 15 carries.
Asked this week what Akers needed to do to maximize his opportunities, offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur said the rushing attack needed all 11 players on offense to be effective.
“We weren’t satisfied with how we ran the ball,” LaFleur said. “So, yeah, Cam statistically wasn’t what it was, but again, it’s all 11. And so we don’t look at it like… I didn’t know what he had at the end of the game…. There’s too much involved in just saying, ‘Hey, it’s this guy has to do this to be successful.’ It takes all 11 and I truly mean that.”
Akers, a second-round draft pick in 2020, has rushed for 1,443 yards and 10 touchdowns. In 2021, he came back from an Achilles injury suffered before training camp and returned to play in the season finale and the run to Super Bowl LVI.
Akers is due to become a restricted free agent at the end of the season.
The question now is whether he will still be with the Rams.
Asked during the offseason if he thought he was in a good spot with McVay, Akers said, “Yeah, I do.”
Asked if he had ever talked through with McVay or come to a better understanding about what transpired during the 2022 season, he said, “whatever happened, happened.”
“We didn’t really just go into depth about it but we talked and moved on,” Akers said. “All of that’s kind of far removed. I don’t really think about it…. We’re on great terms from my point of view. I don’t see why we wouldn’t be.”