Even Akers' record-tying kick was a group effort

September 10, 2012, 1:23 am
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GREEN BAY, Wisc. -- David Akers' name will go in the NFL record book again.And in the ultimate team victory on Sunday, the 49ers' kicker knows he could not have gotten his opportunity to boot a 63-yard field goal on the final play of the first half without some well-timed contributions from Kyle Williams and backup quarterback Colin Kaeperick."Some of that stuff gets overlooked," Akers said in the aftermath of the 49ers' 30-22 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday at Lambeau Field.Williams' season ended last season with heartbreak after his two turnovers on punt returns were critical plays in the 49ers' loss to the New York Giants in the NFC championship game. But he came through as a punt returner on Sunday with Ted Ginn out with an ankle injury.Williams played a key role in a sequence in which Akers kicked two field goals in the final 55 seconds of the first half to give the 49ers a 16-7 halftime lead. Williams returned a Tim Masthay punt 20 yards to give the 49ers the ball at their own 38 with :18 remaining in the half."First, the defense came up with a big stop after we put the field goal on the board," Williams said. "At first, we were looking at a situation where we might just fair-catch it."But then coach (special teams coordinator Brad) Seely came over and said, 'No, try to run it back. Let's try to get something out of this.' He (Masthay) put it out there and gave me some space. I did what I could with it. I still think I could've broken a tackle and gotten a little more."After the 49ers took over, Kaepernick entered in place of Alex Smith and kept the ball for a 17-yard gain to the Green Bay 45."(We) put that play in for Kaep, a quarterback draw," 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said. "Kyle set it up with the punt return. A lot of good things had to happen, starting with the punt return. Kyle made a good play on that. And then Kaep makes the big run."Akers, who made a kick from 61-yards out in warmups, was sent out to attempt a 63-yard field goal. His trajectory on the kick was lower because of the distance it had to travel. The blocking held up, and long-snapper Brian Jennings and holder Andy Lee were perfect.
"I didn't think I hit it that great," Akers said. "If I'd hit it like I hit the 43-yarder, it would've gotten over without hitting the crossbar. We did knock down the elevation to give it the chance of getting there."Akers, who set the NFL record with 44 field goals last season, earlier made kicks of 40 and 43 yards. His 63-yarder hit the crossbar and tumbled over."The bounce and going through was some of the craziest stuff I've seen in football," Williams said. "I think that was huge for us going into the half, being able to go up 16-7."Akers became the fourth player in NFL history to kick a 63-yard field goal, joining Tom Dempsey (1970), Jason Elam (1998) and Sebastian Janikowski (2011)."I was actually speechless," said Akers, a 14-year veteran. "It was a career day to be able to do something like that."