3 ways the Panthers can beat the Bucs without Christian McCaffrey
By Dean Jones
The Carolina Panthers can still beat the Bucs without Christian McCaffrey.
After just one game back in the lineup, the Carolina Panthers might once again be without the services of star running back Christian McCaffrey. The All-Pro injured his shoulder late on at the Chiefs that forced him to miss a crucial final drive, but what comes next regarding the player remains unclear.
According to ESPN’s NFL insider Adam Schefter, McCaffrey is not expected to play in Week 10 at home to the Buccaneers. He is currently listed as week-to-week with the injury after being day-to-day only 24 hours before and according to beat writer David Newton, the former first-round pick is getting a second opinion regarding the severity of his latest injury.
This is a hammer blow for the player and the Panthers. McCaffrey has featured in just four games after signing a $64 million extension with a $21 million signing bonus and $38 million guaranteed this offseason and if this results in another trip to the reserve/injured list, league rules state that this will end his 2020 season.
Despite the doom and gloom, all hope is not lost. Here are four ways that Carolina can win even without their face of the franchise.
1. Have faith in Mike Davis
The Panthers should continue to show confidence in Mike Davis getting the job done in McCaffrey’s absence. The veteran took the NFL by storm when he was initially thrust into a starting role and although his production diminished once defenses realized he was the focal point of their offense, he can still carry the load against the Bucs and possibly beyond.
Davis worked hard to earn the primary backup role during training camp. The former South Carolina standout has 631 all-purpose yards and four touchdowns to his name this season, which also includes a 4.2 yards-per-carry average.
Tampa Bay’s defense will smell blood early in this one. If Davis can gain significant yardage and chew up the clock, the better Carolina’s chances will be.