3 ways the Panthers can help Christian McCaffrey in 2021

Dean Jones
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /
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Carolina Panthers
(Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /

Become a more balanced offense

There are obviously some concerns about the way Christian McCaffrey was utilized over the last two seasons. The Panthers haven’t had much in the way of consistent quarterback play due to Cam Newton’s injury prior to his departure, so this forced them to lean heavily on the running back on his way to an eye-popping number of touches prior to the 2020 campaign.

McCaffrey accumulated 729 combined touches from 2018-19. This is a trend that simply cannot continue if Carolina wants to get bang for their buck for the duration of the player’s new four-year, $64 million deal with a $21 million signing bonus and $38 million guaranteed.

The Panthers have plenty of weapons in the passing game to make this possible, providing quarterback Sam Darnold makes a better go of things in a different environment following his trade from the New York Jets.

D.J. Moore, Robby Anderson, David Moore, Dan Arnold, and recent draft picks Terrace Marshall Jr. and Shi Smith all come with big-play ability. So if the Panthers can find more balance on offense it is going to open up things enormously.

McCaffrey is still going to get more than his fair share of touches. But the simple fact is Carolina does not have to be as reliant on the player considering the wealth of other options available.