David Akers closes Twitter account because of death threats

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- San Francisco 49ers kicker David Akers said Thursday he received death threats on Twitter and closed his account.

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Akers received the death threats late last month, but he is unsure at the number of posts directed at him because he did not go further back on his account to see how many.

"It was Twitter stuff," Akers said. "I got off there, so I won't deal with that anymore."

Once Akers initially saw the death threats, he reported them to 49ers and NFL security personnel. The 49ers said they were aware of the situation, and so was the league.

"I didn't go back and look any further," Akers said. "I hadn't been on there for weeks, so I didn't go back and look at any old ones after that. I don't take anything lightly. You really can't. I went through the proper people and what they felt like was safe."

It was Akers last season who came to the defense of 49ers teammate Kyle Williams when he faced threats following two costly fumbles in the NFC Championship Game, a 20-17 overtime loss to the New York Giants.

Unlike 2011, when he made 44 of 52 field-goal attempts, Akers has been in a slump this season. He is 29 for 42 on field-goal tries.

Akers missed overtime kicks twice against the Rams this season, with the 49ers losing at St. Louis and tying at home. Akers had a field-goal attempt blocked during a Dec. 23 loss at Seattle, and Richard Sherman returned it 90 yards for a touchdown.

"It's a game, it's a business, it's my career, but it's not who I am," Akers said of football. "I would definitely give that 63-yarder back to make the two kicks against St. Louis. People talk about my demeanor being down, listen, I take my job seriously. I feel when I miss kicks I let the team, the organization, the fans down. I take it personal."

Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press