Should Panthers sit Christian McCaffrey and Robbie Anderson in Week 6?
By Dean Jones
Should the Carolina Panthers sit Christian McCaffrey and Robbie Anderson in Week 6 at the Los Angeles Rams amid trade talks surrounding the duo?
With a little more than 24 hours before the Carolina Panthers kicked off their Week 6 encounter at the Los Angeles Rams, two of the league’s most respected insiders published reports about the organization listening to offers for both Christian McCaffrey and Robbie Anderson.
Coincidence? Probably not.
This sort of stuff doesn’t happen unless sit comes from within. Influential figures within the organization likely leaked this news to potentially start a bidding war between interested parties as the Panthers look to maximize compensation for two established stars with proven production.
According to Ian Rappaport of the NFL Network, the Panthers are willing to listen to offers and have rejected to trades for McCaffrey. This is nothing new, but recent revelations could speed the process along as the organization looks to acquire enough draft capital for a new head coach to form a long-term plan capable of progression without conducting a fire sale.
"“While the Panthers did receive many calls, sources say the team won’t hold a fire sale. With a talented roster that still needs a quarterback for the future, Carolina won’t be dumping its talented players for several reasons — with one being it would like to attract a top-notch coach with its talent.”"
Anderson is another that looks to be a primary trade candidate. The wide receiver is cutting a disillusioned figure these days and now that his former college coach Matt Rhule isn’t around, there won’t be a better time for Carolina to cash in and get something back in return.
Carolina Panthers can’t afford to sit Christian McCaffrey
This speculation was anticipated in the wake of Rhule’s dismissal. But if the Panthers are serious about trading the veteran duo, is it worth sitting them for the team’s game at SoFi Stadium in Week 6?
Given McCaffrey’s injury struggles over the last two seasons, it would make sense. Carolina can ill afford another health complication to the All-Pro at this stage, which would put a significant dent in any hope they have of moving the former first-round pick for a solid return.
However, McCaffrey is a competitor and interim head coach Steve Wilks wants to hit the ground running. Unless something immediate is in the offing, then the Stanford product will play and be the focal point on offense once again.
With Anderson, it could be a different story.
The wideout was listed on the injury report as questionable due to illness. Make of that what you will, but keeping Anderson out of action allows the Panthers to begin integrating the likes of Terrace Marshall Jr. and Shi Smith into prominent depth chart positions with increased targets.
That is seemingly better for the long-term, one suspects. Plus Anderson hasn’t exactly been setting the world alight over the last two seasons despite going over 100 receiving yards in Week 1 against the Cleveland Browns.
Carolina making the NFL aware of their intentions with McCaffrey and Anderson was a wise move with the trade deadline of November 1 fast approaching. But until something concrete emerges, it’s business as usual as the Panthers look to get out of their current slump against the defending Super Bowl champions.
All fans can do is wait with bated breath to see what comes next.