ST. LOUIS — Record-setting kicker David Akers showed off a strong left arm to match his left leg in San Francisco's 34-27 victory against the Rams that locked up a first-round bye in the playoffs for the 49ers.
Akers, a former Tates Creek and Louisville standout, wasn't expecting special-teams coordinator Brad Seely's call for a fake field goal, but it resulted in Akers' first career touchdown pass.
It was also Akers' second completion in two attempts — he had an 11-yard pass in 2006 for the Philadelphia Eagles.
"I looked over and Crab was wide open. I was like, 'Oh my,'" Akers said of wide receiver Michael Crabtree. "I underthrew him, but he ran a little slant in there and made it look real smooth for me."
Coach Jim Harbaugh said the 49ers have been practicing that trick play for 10 weeks, during which time Crabtree said he's told Akers: "Just throw the ball and I got you."
On the play, Crabtree appeared to be leaving the field but stopped just shy of the sideline and no defender followed.
"Kind of like I disappeared on the sideline, but I was 2 feet away, so it worked out," Crabtree said. "They didn't see me. I was just over there really just chillin', waiting on D.A. (Akers) to throw me the ball."
Akers broke the NFL single-season field goal record last week and finished with 44, including five in the first half of the two St. Louis meetings. He missed on a 48-yarder, but clicked from 36 and 42 yards.
After beating the Rams for the second time in five weeks, 49ers players were happy to be getting a break.
Crabtree also caught a 28-yard touchdown pass from Alex Smith in the second quarter for a 14-7 lead, a play Crabtree finished by high-stepping to the goal line.
"It was the little bit of Deion (Sanders) in me and I had to slow it down," Crabtree said.
Sunday's team-high nine receptions for 92 yards made Crabtree the 49ers' leading receiver for the first time in his three-year career. He totaled 73 receptions for 880 yards, just enough to beat out tight end Vernon Davis (67 catches, 792 yards).