4 silver linings from the Carolina Panthers loss at NY Giants in Week 2

(Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey
(Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /
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Carolina Panthers
(Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /

Carolina Panthers got Christian McCaffrey going

In Week 1 against the Cleveland Browns, Christian McCaffrey‘s impact in the run game was all but non-existent. The All-Pro secured just 10 carries for 33 rushing yards and a touchdown, which isn’t the blueprint for success given how difficult it’s been for the Carolina Panthers to pass the football in recent years.

The game plan in Week 2 was to get McCaffrey involved in the run game early and often, finishing with 15 carries and 102 rushing yards. This might have been only a slight increase in carries, but the former first-round pick made the most of of them with a dazzling second-half performance.

McCaffrey needs to see 20-25 combined touches for him to show what kind of game-changer he is with the ball in his hands. Although there is also the need to keep the league’s best dual-threat running back fit after some injury concerns over the last two years.

Even when opposing defenses gameplan against McCaffrey, the Stanford product is still able to get big yardage when gaps appear. Opposing defenses are quite happy to focus their attention on stopping him, leaving Baker Mayfield with additional pressure on his shoulders during a mixed bag from the quarterback so far.

Seeing McCaffrey’s elusiveness back to where it was before his injury complications is a major plus. Something the Carolina Panthers can look to for inspiration in a critical Week 3 clash against the New Orleans Saints at Bank of America Stadium.