Skip to main content

Dynasty Player Profile: Cam Akers (2022 Fantasy Football)

Dynasty Player Profile: Cam Akers (2022 Fantasy Football)

Cam Akers Career Production

*Based on PPR scoring

Career Contextualization

After a productive career at Florida State, Cam Akers was a second-round pick (52nd overall) by the Los Angeles Rams in 2020. He was the fourth running back off the board that year, behind Clyde Edwards-Helaire (32nd), D'Andre Swift (35th), and Jonathan Taylor (41st). While he hasn't produced like Taylor and Swift for far in his career, Akers has been productive when on the field.

During his three years with the Florida State Seminoles, Akers was one of the better running backs in the country. He averaged 4.9 yards per rushing attempt behind a shaky offensive line. Akers also averaged 18.2 touches for 93.4 scrimmage yards and 0.94 scrimmage touchdowns per game during his career at Florida State. Furthermore, Akers had a career year in 2019 with 1,144 rushing yards, 14 rushing touchdowns, 30 receptions, and four receiving touchdowns. His 14 rushing touchdowns were the second-most in the ACC.

Akers is heading into his third year in the NFL. However, the fantasy world still doesn't know what to make of him. He was solid as a rookie, averaging 4.3 yards per rushing attempt and 7.8 PPR fantasy points per game. Unfortunately, Akers was stuck in a terrible running back by committee situation. However, he produced when given the volume of a lead running back.

In the four games with at least 15 rushing attempts, Akers averaged 3.95 yards per rushing attempt and 13.9 PPR fantasy points per game in 2020. He averaged 23.5 total touches per game in those four games. Over a 16-game pace, his 13.9 fantasy points per game average would have totaled 222.4 fantasy points, making him the RB10 for the year.

By comparison, Akers averaged only 5.1 PPR fantasy points in the other nine games that season. In addition, he averaged only 6.9 touches per game in those contests, totaling 10 or fewer touches in all nine games. Over a 16-game pace, his 5.1 fantasy points per game average would have totaled 81.6 fantasy points, making him the RB59 for the year, tied with Kyle Juszczyk.

Unfortunately, Akers missed three games in his rookie year because of injuries. Then, he suffered a torn Achilles in July 2021. Many thought he would miss the entire season. Instead, Akers recovered in just under six months and played in the Week 18 matchup against the San Francisco 49ers.

Current Situation

After Akers suffered the torn Achilles, the Rams turned to 2019 third-round pick Darrell Henderson. However, he has dealt with injuries in his career, which forced the Rams to acquire Sony Michel in a trade with the New England Patriots before the 2021 season. Yet, Henderson was the featured back when healthy.

Henderson is under contract for the 2022 season and will hit the free-agent market next offseason. The Rams haven't re-signed Michel despite his role in their Super Bowl run last year. At this point, it's unlikely Michel is back with the Rams for next season. Akers and Henderson are healthy, while the team spent a fifth-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft on Kyren Williams. The former Notre Dame star will have a role in the Los Angeles backfield but isn't a threat to Akers' starting position.

While still shaking off the rust of his miraculous comeback, Akers played a critical role for the Rams in their Super Bowl run. He averaged only 2.6 yards per rushing attempt in the playoffs. However, the offensive line struggled to run block during the postseason. By comparison, Michel averaged only 3.1 yards per rushing attempt on 51 fewer attempts during the playoffs.

Fantasy owners shouldn't need to worry about his 2.6 yards per rushing attempt average from the playoffs. Akers averaged 4.8 rushing yards per attempt on 46 rushing attempts during the 2020 playoffs. His playoff performance was the main reason Akers was a possible first-round pick in redraft leagues last year before tearing his Achilles.

General Prediction for 2022 and Rest of Career

Akers is the unquestioned starter in Los Angeles. Michel is a free agent, Henderson has struggled to stay healthy when given a heavy workload, and Williams is a fifth-round pick with limited upside.

Coming back from the torn Achilles in record-breaking time is impressive. It also gave everyone a chance to see Akers on the field last season. While his rushing yards per attempt average wasn't ideal, Akers looked healthy and explosive on the field. With an entire offseason to further rehab and improve his game, Akers has plenty of upside for 2022 and beyond.

During his five years as the Rams head coach, Sean McVay always had a featured running back when the opportunity presented itself. In 2020 and 2021, the Rams were forced to use a running back by committee approach because of injuries. However, from 2017 to 2019, McVay leaned heavily on Todd Gurley.

In 2017, Gurley had 279 of the 353 rushing attempts by the running backs on the team (79%). The following year, he had 256 of the 369 rushing attempts (69.4%). In 2019, he had 223 of the 334 rushing attempts (66.8%). Unfortunately, Gurley's knee issues became an issue starting in 2018, causing him to miss games.

Furthermore, Akers has been the Rams' featured running back during the playoffs the past two years. In 2020, he had 46 of the 55 rushing attempts by the running backs on the team (83.6%). Despite suffering a torn Achilles six months earlier and playing only 13 snaps during the regular-season finale, Akers had 67 of the 99 rushing attempts by the running backs on the team (67.7%) in 2021. By comparison, Michel had 26 rushing attempts while Henderson had four. Furthermore, Akers led all running backs on the team with 159 postseason snaps played.

In conclusion, Akers is in line for a massive workload next season and beyond. Henderson is his handcuff and nothing more. Furthermore, he is a free agent after next season and likely won't get re-signed. Williams will play a role in the passing game and cut into Akers' target share. However, he isn't a threat to Akers' starting role. Unless he suffers another severe injury in his career, Akers is a top 24 dynasty startup pick and a set and forget RB1 for your fantasy team.


Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Stitcher | SoundCloud | iHeartRadio

If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant - which provides your optimal lineup based on accurate consensus projections - to our Waiver Wire Assistant - which allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and by how much - we've got you covered this fantasy football season.

Mike Fanelli is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @Mike_NFL2.

More Articles

Must-Have Fantasy Football Draft Picks: Erickson’s Top Targets (2024)

Must-Have Fantasy Football Draft Picks: Erickson’s Top Targets (2024)

fp-headshot by Andrew Erickson | 1 min read
3 Fantasy Football Draft Picks to Avoid (2024)

3 Fantasy Football Draft Picks to Avoid (2024)

fp-headshot by Michael Moore | 4 min read
Video: Will Jonathan Taylor Outperform His Ranks? (2024 Fantasy Football)

Video: Will Jonathan Taylor Outperform His Ranks? (2024 Fantasy Football)

fp-headshot by FantasyPros Staff | 2 min read
Dynasty Draft Primer: NFC East (2024 Fantasy Football)

Dynasty Draft Primer: NFC East (2024 Fantasy Football)

fp-headshot by Bo McBrayer | 5 min read

About Author

Hide

Current Article

1 min read

Must-Have Fantasy Football Draft Picks: Erickson’s Top Targets (2024)

Next Up - Must-Have Fantasy Football Draft Picks: Erickson’s Top Targets (2024)

Next Article