Rams head coach Sean McVay on April 6 said the team was doing its homework on this year's running back class, though whether they used a pick in this year's draft to address that position remained to be seen.
Ultimately, they chose to do so, picking up Florida State junior Cam Akers at No. 52 in the second round. It's an opportunity Akers is excited about.
"Just a blessing to be in this position, a blessing to be a part of such a great organization," Akers said on a video conference Friday night. "As far as filling Todd Gurley's shoes, just going to come in and play whatever the team need me to be. Whatever they need me to be, whatever they need me to do, that's what I'll do."
Akers said he had video meetings with the Rams over FaceTime "a few times" during the pre-draft process. He shares an agent with Los Angeles cornerback Jalen Ramsey and is also familiar with running back Darrell Henderson, who is a fellow Mississippi native.
At Florida State, Akers joined former Seminole greats Warrick Dunn and Dalvin Cook as one of three players from FSU with multiple 1,000-yard rushing seasons. His 2,874 career rushing yards and 11 100-yard rushing games both ranked sixth in program history, while his 27 rushing touchdowns are seventh-most.
"I think I bring a 3-down, 4-down back if necessary," Akers said, when asked what he brings to the Rams. "I'm somebody who can come in and be a game-changer, be everything this team and the fans need me to be and everything they're expecting me to be."
He doesn't want to limit his contributions to the Rams' rushing attack, though.
"Whether it's blocking, running, catching, special teams, whatever I need to do," Akers said. "I've got my big boy pants on and I'm ready to do it."
Besides those multi-purpose abilities, Akers also has a unique background as someone who played both running back and quarterback coming out of high school.
"(Being a former high school quarterback helps) just being able to break down defenses and go through the progressions a little faster," said Akers, who averaged 4.9 yards per carry across three seasons at Florida State. "Having that edge, having that quarterback thought process when approaching the line of scrimmage and approaching every play."
Akers said he didn't talk to McVay prior to the draft, but McVay told him he thought he could fit in well and be a big piece to the offense. Combined with knowing how McVay uses his running backs in the running game and the passing game, L.A. makes for an appealing destination for him to begin his NFL career.
"They allow their backs to do everything," Akers said. "I think it would be good for any back, but thank God I'm in that situation."
For all the latest draft news, visit www.therams.com/draft.
Welcome to LA, Cam Akers! Meet the running back from Florida State.