The Los Angeles Rams remain among the favorites to win Super Bowl LVI despite losing running back Cam Akers to a season-ending Achilles injury.
Oddsmakers at DraftKings, PointsBet, SportsBetting.com and WynnBet told Field Level Media on Tuesday that the Rams' odds were not impacted by the news that Akers will miss the 2021 season.
Akers rushed for 625 yards and two touchdowns on 145 carries as a rookie after being selected in the second round of the 2020 draft out of Florida State. That included 171 yards on 29 carries in a Week 13 win over New England. He also gained 131 yards on 28 carries with a touchdown in the Rams' wild card win over Seattle.
Akers appeared primed for a big sophomore season, but SportsBetting.com odds consultant Scott Cooley told Field Level Media that injuries to running backs outside of Carolina's Christian McCaffrey, Minnesota's Dalvin Cook and Tennessee's Derrick Henry are unlikely to move lines.
"Akers may have been poised to 'break out' this year, but we have to remember that this guy wasn't even the Rams' starter at times early on last season," Cooley said. "And while some sportsbooks may try to generate a story around this injury by moving the numbers, true oddsmakers won't flinch at this news.
"When we look at player value rankings and tiers, as far as what each is worth to a point spread, there are only a few who aren't quarterbacks. For example, years ago Adrian Peterson was the only non-QB with a point value, and he was worth just one point to a line."
Darrell Henderson is expected to take over the starting job in the Rams' backfield. However, Los Angeles may look to bring in more veteran depth with the only other running backs on the current roster being unproven Xavier Jones, Raymond Calais and rookies Jake Funk and Otis Anderson.
Peterson, Le'Veon Bell and LeSean McCoy are among the veteran running backs who remain unsigned as the start of training camps approach.
The Rams remain the favorites ahead of San Francisco to win the NFC West at DraftKings (180) and SportsBetting.com (200), while PointsBet is offering both team at 190 to win the division.
Los Angeles is also among the top Super Bowl contenders at each of the books.
The Rams are tied with the Buffalo Bills for the third-shortest odds at 1200 at PointsBet and SportsBetting.com, while Los Angeles is the fourth betting favorite at DraftKings (1300).
At WynnBet, the Rams are 180 to win the NFC West, 500 to win the NFC Championship and 1200 to win the Super Bowl. The sportsbook is also offering odds on Los Angeles' exact win total.
No. of Wins (Odds)
Super Bowl LVI will be held Feb. 6, 2022 at the Rams' new SoFi Stadium.
--Field Level Media