Carolina Panthers: 3 questions at running back entering camp

(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey
(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /
2 of 4
Christian McCaffrey, Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /

Carolina Panthers Question No. 1: How much better can Christian McCaffrey get?

Christian McCaffrey is officially the new face of the Carolina Panthers. The organization gave him a lengthy contract extension this offseason. And they parted ways with quarterback Cam Newton in a messy departure that eventually saw the 2015 NFL MVP sign with the New England Patriots.

There is little doubt that McCaffrey is going to thrive with even more responsibility on his shoulders. He is a threat to score every time he touches the ball. And the former Stanford product has been a revelation during his three-year stint in the NFL so far.

More from Cat Crave

McCaffrey became only the third player in NFL history to go over 1,000-yards rushing and receiving last season. But how much better can the $64 million-man get going forward?

He accumulated more than 400 combined touches in 2019. If the Panthers want to get the most out of the back for the duration of his four-year deal, then this is a trend that cannot continue.

However, there is nothing to suggest that McCaffrey cannot make an equally impressive impact with fewer touches. Carolina has game-changing weapons in the passing game that warrant considerable attention. And Teddy Bridgewater should provide a more consistent throwing presence under center.

Everything will continue to go through McCaffrey. And his status as the best dual-threat running back in the NFL is going to ensure maximum productivity from whatever carries and targets he gets next season.

The sky is the limit for the former No. 8 overall pick in Joe Brady’s offense. McCaffrey is an exceptional player with proven credentials. And the Panthers are fortunate to have him.