Technically, Giants running back Saquon Barkley hasn’t been ruled out for Big Blue’s Week 3 game against the San Francisco 49ers yet. But, that’s probably just head coach Brian Daboll being stubborn. With Barkley considered week to week with an ankle sprain, should Joe Schoen make a move? Joe Rivera of Sporting News thinks so, as he listed New York as one of the top Cam Akers landing spots.
Akers appears to be on the outs with the Los Angeles Rams and head coach Sean McVay. The running back was inactive in Week 2 as a healthy scratch. It also sounds like the organization is confident a deal will get done. Here’s what McVay said about it (quote via New York Post):
“(General manager) Les (Snead) has talked to a handful of teams and worked with (Akers’ agent) David Mulugheta and seeing if there is some interest for him out there,” McVay said Monday. “That’s the direction we’re headed.”
McVay expressed confidence that a trade will be completed and Akers has played his last snaps with the team.
“That won’t be an opportunity,” McVay said of Akers sticking around. “It will be an opportunity to move … I feel good about the opportunity to be able to move him, but we won’t go back and forth on it.”
👉 Claim your $1,000 First-Bet Bonus with this BetMGM NY Promo Code
With a trade looking inevitable, where could Akers land? It’ll depend on which teams are willing to surrender some draft-pick compensation to make it happen. Here’s what Rivera said about the Giants being a potential fit (via Sporting News):
Saquon Barkley has missed time with injury in three of the Giants’ last four seasons, and he’ll likely miss some time again with an ankle injury in Week 2. Behind Barkley is Matt Breida, Gary Brightwell and Eric Gray. Breida has been around, but Brightwell and Gray have a combined 150 rushing yards to their names (Gray is a rookie).
The Giants have an opportunity to take advantage of a weak NFC this year, and to do that, they should be looking to make low-cost upgrades throughout the year. That means a trade for Akers to provide a 1-2 punch with Barkley at the top would be beneficial.
Rivera also mentioned the Colts, Ravens, Vikings, and Dolphins as other potential landing spots.
Having a two-headed attack in the backfield behind quarterback Daniel Jones sounds like a good idea. The Jets are deploying that strategy in a sense with Breece Hall and Dalvin Cook (although it didn’t go well for them in Week 2). Schoen does have a salary cap situation to figure out in New York. But if he were to seriously consider acquiring Akers, the cap hit isn’t too exorbitant.
The Rams selected Akers with the 52nd overall pick (second round) in the 2020 NFL Draft. Before getting benched, he rushed for 29 yards on 22 attempts with one touchdown in Week 1. He piled up 786 yards on 188 attempts with seven scores in 2022.