Carolina Panthers: Christian McCaffrey joins exclusive 1,000-1,000 club
Carolina Panthers running back, Christian McCaffrey, achieves historic milestone.
The Carolina Panthers entered 2019 with high hopes after signing a number of veterans to one-year deals in an effort to shore up their roster. General manager Marty Hurney then made a number of exciting draft selections as the pieces fell in place for Carolina to compete for a Super Bowl return with a roster heavy in both young talent and veteran leadership.
Unfortunately, these goals didn’t pan out as Ron Rivera was fired midway through a second-half collapse and interim coach Perry Fewell took over. The latter couldn’t right a sinking ship as Carolina continued their dismal performances, losing eight straight to wind out the 2019 season and nothing but a high draft pick adding a silver lining to an otherwise pitiful performance.
Despite the struggles, running back Christian McCaffrey offered the single bright spot of an otherwise futile campaign. Opponents understood McCaffrey was essentially the lone offensive weapon since midyear but still failed to stop him. On Sunday, the Panthers running back became one of just three players to record 1,000 yards receiving and rushing in a single season – ever.
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Joining Marshall Faulk and Roger Craig, McCaffrey made it without his starting quarterback for a majority of the season. Cam Newton was injured during preseason play and after two games never returned. Playing under the guidance of Kyle Allen and Will Grier on offense, McCaffrey continued to put up impressive numbers week in and week out.
Initially expected to be in the conversation for league MVP, McCaffrey fell by the wayside as Carolina dropped game after game throughout the second half. However, if the award was given to the player who did, in fact, make the biggest contribution to their team then there is no doubt McCaffrey would win.
Carolina finished 5-11 on the year but without their prime running back, it’s hard to fathom any number of wins. Already an impact player, McCaffrey is expected to continue as a large part of the Panthers offense for many years to come.
Regardless of who is selected this offseason to lead the franchise into the future.