It’s that time of year once again! Football Absurdity will bring you a breakdown of every notable fantasy football-relevant player throughout June, July, and August. We finished our quarterbacks already; that means it’s time to get to the most frustrating position! That’s right, we’re on to the running backs. Today we take a look at a back who is getting top-12 RB publicity off of six hot games. What can we expect from 2021 fantasy football?
[UPDATE: 07/20 – CAM AKERS TORE HIS ACHILLES TENDON AND WILL MISS THE ENTIRETY OF 2021]
Cam Akers ADP & AAV:
Average Draft Position (HPPR): RB11, Pick 15
Average Auction Value: $46 (RB10)
Cam Akers Statistics:
|Year||G||GS||Rush||Ru Yds||Ru TD||Tgt||Rec||Yards||TD||Touches||Opp||Total Yards|
|Year||Std Pts||HPPR Pts||PPR Pts||Pts/G||HPPR Pts/G||PPR Pts/G||Pts/Tch||HPPR Pts/Tch||PPR Pts/Tch|
2021 Cam Akers Fantasy Football Overview:
I liked Cam Akers headed into the 2020 NFL season. I thought he was a very talented running back, who just needed the right system to thrive. He ended up on the Los Angeles Rams, who promised, time and again, that he would get more touches, eventually. Akers toiled in obscurity, getting just 6.9 touches per game in the first twelve weeks of the season. Cam Akers found his way to fantasy football waiver wires, and rightfully so, as the Rams prioritized Malcolm Brown and Darrell Henderson. Then, the Rams opened the floodgates, giving him 23.5 touches per game over the next four games. In those four games, he averaged 109 yards per game.
Unfortunately, most fantasy leagues account for more than just yards. Cam Akers scored just one touchdown in those four games and had just two catches per game in that span. These, combined with the return of Darrell Henderson, give me pause in calling 2021 Cam Akers a top-ten running back.
Setting aside that Henderson will likely knock Akers down to 18 or so touches per game, his touchdowns and targets are of great concern, to me. This is doubly true when you consider the reasons why people could be down on fellow sophomore running backs, J.K. Dobbins and Clyde Edwards-Helaire.
People shy away from Dobbins because the Ravens don’t pass to running backs, and they shy away from CEH because he was terrible on the goal line last year. The Rams rank in the bottom-three in running back targets in each of the last two seasons, and Cam Akers scored one touchdown on eight rush attempts inside the five. CEH’s terrible reputation comes from going one-for-nine in the same situation. But, we smack down CEH, but not Akers.
2021 Cam Akers Fantasy Football Draft Strategy:
This isn’t to say I don’t think Akers will be good. Good, and “good enough to justify his draft-day price” are two different things. Dobbins and Clyde Edwards-Helaire are middling RB2s in most fantasy football drafts, whereas Akers now has an auction value above Austin Ekeler because his helium is out of control. I don’t hate Akers, I think he will be good! But, it’s looking highly likely that I won’t have Akers anywhere this season. I can’t justify spending a top-fifteen selection on a guy who has every worry we have about every other sophomore running back rolled up into one player. He just hasn’t earned that draft price yet.
I’m not worried about his talent, I’m worried about his usage. Nobody can doubt the talent, but there’s so much up in the air in Los Angeles with the squad as a whole and the running back room in specific, but people seem to be whistling past the graveyard, there.
If I’m wrong, congratulations, he returned pretty much his exact value. You sure showed me.
Best Case Scenario:
The Rams reorganize their roster to focus on Cam Akers and double down on him. He finishes the year with 1,800 yards, 3 catches, and 4 touchdowns.
Worst Case Scenario:
Darrell Henderson rises from the ashes and steals Cam Akers’ job.
Check out all our 2021 player profiles, here.
Want more 2021 fantasy football draft discussion? Check out these links!
[Statistics are sourced from pro-football-reference.com, airyards.com, and ftnfantasy.com]
[Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/de/Cam_Akers_2020.jpg, cropped under CC BY SA 2.0]