SANTA CLARA -- Coach Jim Harbaugh isn't the only one endorsing David Akers as the 49ers kicker for Super Bowl XLVII, even if Harbaugh's vote counts most.
All three kickers from the 49ers' five Super Bowl-winning teams are pledging support, too.
"No way they should make a change. Dave's a great kicker," Ray Wersching said Tuesday by phone from his San Carlos home. "If I had an opportunity to talk to him, I'd tell him he's not just good but great."
Wersching kicked in the 49ers' first two Super Bowl wins, and he's willing to bet that Akers can win his first ring Feb. 3 against the Baltimore Ravens.
Also pro-Akers is Doug Brien, who kicked in the 49ers' last Super Bowl win 18 years ago -- a 49-26 rout of the San Diego Chargers.
"If you had to take a kicker to be out there for you in a Super Bowl, there's not many guys I'd pick above David Akers," Brien said Tuesday.
When the 49ers considered replacing Akers with Billy Cundiff before their Jan. 12 playoff opener, former 49ers kicker Mike Cofer surfaced on a Bay Area radio station and recalled his own up-and-down career. Cofer sided with keeping Akers, telling 95.7 The Game he was "in his court."
Akers is in the midst of an extremely bittersweet season, as evidenced Sunday when the 49ers clinched the NFC title with a 28-24 win at Atlanta.
As Akers' teammates ran off the sideline to celebrate their Super Bowl berth, he calmly walked in their wake, and he was one
That game was the first in his two-season tenure with the 49ers in which he did not kick a field goal. His only attempt, from 38 yards, clanked off the top of the left upright, his 14th miss in his past 38 attempts.
"It's all mental. The guy's got an unbelievable leg," Wersching said. "That stroke is not off very much. He hits the top of the upright -- that's tough to do."
As distraught as Akers might feel, he shouldn't openly express that, according to Wersching, who famously ignored his surroundings by never looking at the uprights when he went out to kick.
Akers enjoyed record-setting production last season upon his 49ers arrival, making 44 of 52 field-goal attempts.
"I'm a big fan of his, with that terrific career and unbelievable (2011) year," Brien said. "Unfortunately the law of averages always comes back at some point. He hit a little bit of a rough patch."
Akers has kicked in a Super Bowl before, but he didn't attempt a field goal as the 2004 Philadelphia Eagles fell to the New England Patriots 24-21 in Jacksonville, Fla.
The 49ers won their five Super Bowls by margins of 5, 22, 4, 45 and 23 points. Not once did they rely on kicker to make a winning field goal.
Both Wersching and Brien are anticipating a close game against the Ravens, who defeated the 49ers 16-6 on Thanksgiving Night last season in Baltimore.
"I'd love nothing more than for David to go out there and have a big impact," Brian said. "And that would bookend his season, with the (record-tying) 63-yarder he made to start the season."
San Francisco Giants players are hoping their football counterparts get a chance to experience a title parade. Page 5