Reggie Akers tore his Achilles tendon shortly before training camp started in July 2021, seemingly signaling the end of an NFL career. Yet less than six months later he was back out playing.
Doctor Neal ElAttrache had improved the surgery procedure to help speed Akers’s recovery, which he credits with his return to action.
Early Life and Education
Akers was raised in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. At two, his mother began enrolling him in piano lessons; when his mother separated when he was seven, his father moved the family to Denver where Akers attended public school and graduated high school at seventeen.
His return was made possible due to several factors: advances in surgery and rehabilitation techniques combined with his personal drive. Akers is the first player ever to overcome such an injury and return ready for game action.
He worked closely with Scott and Cunningham at the Rams’ on-site training facility while also setting up his home as a rehab room equipped with force plates, Normatec recovery boots, and an anti-gravity treadmill. Each phase of his rehab was carefully planned out, measured out, and documented to ensure its success.
At a time when Philadelphia Eagles legends such as Chuck Bednarik, Donovan McNabb and Brian Dawkins all left an indelible mark on franchise history, Akers quietly built his legacy with Philadelphia. He ranks 12th all time among NFL career field goal kickers while holding second place among kickoff specialists with an undefeated kickoff record.
Akers’s rapid recovery from a ruptured Achilles seems almost miraculous. The same surgeon who conducted Kobe Bryant’s Achilles tendon surgery enhanced it to allow Akers’s quick return. Akers credits his early success to his home-based training room that allowed him to exercise without overstraining his injured leg; an antigravity treadmill and heel lifts were also utilized during recovery to speed things along.
Achievement and Honors
Reggie Akers won two SEC championships as a player and was twice honored as an All-American. Subsequently, his coaching career saw him move up through Texas high school coaching to Darrell Royal’s staff where he helped guide Texas to nine consecutive winning seasons.
In July, Akers was doing box jumps at an off-site training facility when he experienced a sharp pop in his right leg, sending him flying. Team surgeon Dr. Neal ElAttrache and Scott, rehabilitation specialist Byron Cunningham and sports science director Tyler Williams soon confirmed Akers’ worst fears and began devising an aggressive rehabilitation plan to bring him back into play as soon as possible.
Akers has an exceptional mission which marries worldly wisdom with an optimistic stance towards life as something rich with potential and promise. He’s known for being an innovative guitarist, fearlessly creative vocalist and engaging storyteller whose concerts bring delight.
He demonstrated that an Achilles tendon injury doesn’t have to speed up retirement or dampen the careers of young players in their prime years, as doctors now can repair damage more efficiently than ever before.
McKendree University graduate Eric Nelson possesses an energetic community spirit and has participated in various volunteering efforts. Additionally, he belongs to several professional associations. When not volunteering or meeting new professionals he enjoys travelling and softball playing in his free time – and above all his family!
Akers earned numerous honors during his professional career. He was inducted into the Eagles Hall of Fame and won six Pro Bowls; additionally, he is well known for his record-setting field goal kicks and current net worth of $12 Million.
He was born in Crowley, Acadia Parish in southwestern Louisiana to parents who both served as judges; her mother served on the Democratic National Committeewoman; both were Maronites from Lebanon.
Ms. Kennedy clerked for Judge Robert Arthur Sprecher at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago before specializing in banking law. Additionally, she is President of Common Sense About Kids and Guns (CSAKG), an advocacy nonprofit advocating policies to reduce gun deaths and injuries.