I could probably leave this post just at that and it would be more than enough. David Akers proved he was a great kicker last year. This year, he decided it was time elevate his status to legendary. Some may think that is a strong word, but after yesterday's electrifying performance, I have no qualms calling "The Captain" a legendary performer. For those wondering, I call him The Captain thanks to a friend of mine and his friends who have used the title to salute his fantasy football dominance.
On the day, Akers was 3-for-3 on field goals and 3-for-3 on extra points. That alone is a solid performance, but we know it goes beyond that. Akers closed out the first half with only the fourth 63-yard field goal in NFL history. The kick equaled the mark initially set by Saints kicker Tom Dempsey, and subsequently equaled by Jason Elam and Sebastian Janikowski.
Here's video of the field goal with audio. Head after the jump for two GIFs and why I think this is more of a record than the previous kicks.
I would actually argue this kick was more legit than the previous field goals because of the context of those kicks. I am not here to say those were not great kicks, because anybody who can do this kind of thing is a bad-ass. I just think David Akers deserves a bit more credit.
When Tom Dempsey first set the record, he did it with a flattened shoe on his kicking foot. He was born without toes on his right foot and had a specialized shoe he used that had a flattened front. Having a flat front provides more of the shoe to connect with the ball, thus potentially creating more power.
Jason Elam and Sebastian Janikowski both matched Dempsey's record on field goals in Denver. Elam did it in 1998 and Seabass did it last year. Both again are great kicks, but they had the benefit of altitude in Denver. Thin air means less resistance on the ball.
I'd imagine Akers had the wind at his back on this kick, so some could make that argument. But kicking that kind of field goal in the elements is bad ass, pure and simple. Below we've got a GIF of the ball hitting the cross-bar, followed by Akers reaction.
And here is David Akers amazing response to his record-tying field goal