Akeem Ayers made the most of his five months with the New England Patriots.
Acquired before the trade deadline along with a seventh-rounder in exchange for a sixth, Ayers found a spot in Foxborough after playing just 10 defensive snaps for the Tennessee Titans through October.
He got on the field for a defense that needed him for 424 through February, according to Pro Football Focus.
The 25-year-old lined up as the starting right defensive end when Chandler Jones was sidelined with a hip injury. Yet he also lined up as an outside linebacker in sub-packages and carved a spot special teams. And in result, he netted 22 tackles, one interception, four sacks, five quarterback hits, 23 hurries and a Super Bowl victory.
And with that, the 6-foot-3, 255-pound UCLA product’s stay with the Patriots comes to an end. But, even so, the end was a worthwhile one for both sides.
Ayers got a chance to reroute his NFL career heading into unrestricted free agency, and the Patriots got a title.