4 things we learned about the Panthers this offseason

(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey
(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /
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Christian McCaffrey, Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /

Carolina Panthers No. 3: Christian McCaffrey is the new face of the franchise

If there was any doubt that Christian McCaffrey is the new face of the Carolina Panthers, then this was dispelled during the offseason. The running back enjoyed a phenomenal 2019 campaign that made him the best dual-threat weapon in the NFL. And it also forced the organization into bucking a concerning trend regarding players at the position.

McCaffrey became only the third player in league history to go over 1,000-yards rushing and receiving in the same season. His three-year stint in Carolina has been nothing short of extraordinary so far. And now Cam Newton is no longer around, it will be up to the former Stanford product to pick up the mantle.

This is something that McCaffrey has done with aplomb during Newton’s 18 months on the sidelines before his release. He got more than 400 combined touches in 2019 and carried the offense almost single-handedly. And while it wouldn’t be wise for the player to shoulder such a responsibility once again. Everything good that comes from their attack will flow through him.

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His exceptional efforts since entering the league earned McCaffrey a four-year, $64 million deal this offseason. This included a $21 million signing bonus and more than $38 million guaranteed. But others at the position looking to benefit from Carolina pulling the trigger have been out of luck so far.

The Panthers made a shrewd move getting McCaffrey signed for his best years. And with all the changes throughout the roster, it was vital that the All-Pro was their one constant no matter what.