THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Los Angeles Rams running back Cam Akers will not play Sunday against the Carolina Panthers after missing practice the past two days for what was listed as personal reasons, coach Sean McVay said Friday.
McVay declined to go into details about why Akers would not play, saying the Rams are "working through some different things with Cam." Asked whether he expects Akers to be a part of the team going forward, McVay reiterated, "We're working through some different things right now."
After the Rams' season-opening loss to the Buffalo Bills, McVay told reporters that he had a conversation with Akers about needing to play with more urgency, noting the reason the pair had that discussion is "a result of my confidence in him and the expectations we have and what we need him to be, which isn't anything more than what he's capable of." Akers later said that conversation occurred during training camp.
Akers has 151 rushing yards and a touchdown on 51 carries this season. After he scored a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 3 -- his first since the 2020 season -- he said he was motivated because "everybody else felt like I lost a step or whatever, but I didn't."
McVay said Friday that Akers is physically OK. He reiterated that the Rams are "dealing with things internally."
"[This is] kind of uncharted territory, and I think the biggest thing is, out of respect for the situation, want to keep it internal," McVay said.
In Akers' absence, McVay said the Rams plan to lean on running backs Darrell Henderson Jr., Malcolm Brown and Ronnie Rivers, who is on the practice squad. Asked whether he expects the Rams to add a running back, McVay said, "I don't know. I wouldn't say no, ever."
"We'll always explore options if we feel like there's chances to upgrade," McVay added. "That's probably not something that's at the forefront."