If this is the end of David Akers' career in Philadelphia, this is certainly not the way he wanted to end it.
The most prolific kicker in Eagles' history who re-wrote the record books and provided the exclamation point on some of the most exciting moments of the last decade had a rare off-night. The Pro Bowl kicker missed two of his three field goal attempts as the Eagles lost 21-16 to the Green Bay Packers on a windy afternoon to end the 2010 season in the Wild Card round of the playoffs.
"For a player, it's the worst you can do. You let down the team, the fans and the organization," Akers said. "I just misplayed the first one and tried to drive it in that wind. I just kind of pulled the second one. That's the way it goes.
""Looking back now on 12 years, it's been a nice run. It's not really the way I wanted to go out as an Eagle. It's tough for the organization and I'm sorry I didn't get to put my best foot forward today for them."
Strong safety Quintin Mikell said after the game that there might have been a reason for Akers' misses.
"I have nothing but love for David and he's been a great kicker for years. He still is. I don't want to put him out there, but he's going through a lot this week. He had some stuff going down and for him to even be out here was big," Mikell said. "I'll let him handle whatever he has to handle, but I love Dave and he fought through a lot today and this week."
The contract for the 36-year-old Akers, the longest-tenured athlete in the city, will expire in March. This season, Akers was named to the Pro Bowl for the fifth time in his career after leading the league with 143 points. He had 32 field goals, which ranked third in the league, as well as a career-high 23 touchbacks. Akers connected on 84.2 percent of his field goal attempts this season and was the NFC's Special Teams Player of the Month for November.
In the postseason, Akers had been just as sharp. Entering the game, Akers had made 85.7 percent (30-of-35) of his attempts and only had missed one since the 2004 postseason until today.
On the Eagles' second drive of the game, after linebacker Omar Gaither recovered a Brandon Underwood fumble on a punt return, Akers set up for a 41-yard attempt into the wind towards the north end zone. Akers pulled the ball wide right. There was no score at the time. However, in the fourth quarter with the Eagles trailing 21-10, Akers attempted a 34-yard try into the south end zone and once again pulled it wide.
Akers didn't blame any outside distractions, the snap, the hold or the wind. None of it. Akers took responsibility for the misses as he called today the toughest day football-wise of his career.
"You've got to do your job to keep things going," Akers said.
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 9:30 p.m., January 9