Replacement Ideas for Cam Akers

Tuesday, Jul 27, 2021 at 6:05 pm ET

Cam Akers suffered a torn Achilles and will be sidelined for the 2021 NFL season. This is a tough loss for a Rams team with high expectations this year. Down their RB1, the Rams must choose to have a running back committee or trade for one. For fantasy, if you had plans of taking Akers, it's time to go back to the board and strategize. Numerous veterans are out on the market and a possible splash trade can be soon.

An old face returns

Todd GurleyNow, remember that monster running back from Georgia? The once most lethal asset in fantasy football, Todd Gurley. Gurley spent five seasons with the Rams and totaled 5,404 rushing yards, 7,497 total yards, and 70 touchdowns. Spending time in Atlanta last season, Gurley was efficient for a span of a few weeks. From weeks one to nine, Gurley totaled 120.3 fantasy points and was labeled an RB2. After Atlanta's bye week, that all changed.

Gurley proceeded to score 17.9 points the rest of the season. Not seeing much playing time in the second half, Gurley's season finished as a letdown. Now, being a free agent and only 26 years old, TGIII can bring a veteran presence to lead the committee of running backs in Mcvay's high-powered offense. One last run to try and do right from the super bowl loss in 2019.

Bell to the rescue

LeVeon BellLe'veon Bell was once a lock as the number 1 RB in fantasy. Arguably, the best in the NFL too. After he departed from the Steelers, things have been on the decline. Bell signed a deal with the New York Jets in 2019 and did not have much success. Last year, he was released and signed with the Kansas City Chiefs. A year of fewer than 100 rushes and under 350 rushing yards, Bell needs a fresh start. At age 28, I believe there is still gas in the tank. What better place to get that fresh start than Sean McVay's high-powered offense.

Furthermore, with a top-tier offensive line, newly acquired Matthew Stafford, I think Bell can rejuvenize his career and make a serious impact for the Rams. The Rams have Super Bowl expectations with an offense that will be able to move the ball down the field. With Aaron Donald and one of the best overall defenses in the NFL, the Rams offensive scheme can bring Bell back to RB2 status and beyond.

Someone Save James Robinson

James RobinsonJames Robinson has to be the most upset player in the NFL. Last season, rushing for over 1000 yards and a top 10 RB finish in fantasy, the Jacksonville Jaguars still took a running back in the 2021 NFL draft. Robinson is a workhorse running back who can handle a load of 20 plus carries. Robinson also can handle catching out the backfield seeing 60 targets and grabbing 49 of them.

The Jags made it clear with drafting Travis Etienne that Robinson might not be in their plans. Robinson does not deserve to play the sharing game with Etienne. Robinson deserves to be an RB1 with the upside of seeing 250 plus carries. The Rams probably won't have to give up much for the second-year player. This would put you in a pickle when Cam Akers returns, but the return rate of running backs with a torn Achilles is not so great. Robinson is a great insurance policy and will make you feel as if you did not lose a step.

Fantasy backup plans

For the Cam Akers lovers out there, I apologize. If you have not already, scoop up Darrell Henderson or trade for him if you can. For those who had high hopes of drafting Akers in the near future, toss that idea out the window. The replacements I have in mind are Antonio Gibson who has extremely high upside. D'Andre Swift, who I think can deliver high RB2 numbers with over 60 receptions, and Chris Carson. Carson's ADP has him going in the third and fourth rounds but taking him in the second is not a bad idea. Carson can deliver RB1 numbers and would be a solid risk with your second pick.

Final thoughts

This is the first of many injures that will, unfortunately, happen this season. You must be ready to take action on the waiver wire and prayers up to Cam Akers for a speedy recovery. The Rams will figure out this unfortunate situation within the month and find a solid replacement for the young running back.

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