Ron Rivera envisions 200 carries for Christian McCaffrey

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As a rookie last season, Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey had 117 carries for 435 yards and two touchdowns. This year the Panthers see McCaffrey getting a bigger workload.

Panthers coach Ron Rivera told ESPN.com he wouldn’t be surprised if McCaffrey reached 200 carries this season. That matches what Rivera said in June, when he said he’s looking forward to seeing McCaffrey run between the tackles more, as he did in college.

McCaffrey is looking bigger and stronger this offseason, which might help him carry a bigger load. Although C.J. Anderson has arrived and will take over some of the running workload, McCaffrey is likely to be the starting running back.

The 22-year-old McCaffrey also caught 80 passes and returned 22 punts and three kickoffs last season, so if he keeps up that production in the passing game and on special teams, he could be looking at a 300-touch season in 2018. That’s what the Panthers envisioned when they drafted McCaffrey, and that’s what they want to see this season.

30 responses to “Ron Rivera envisions 200 carries for Christian McCaffrey

  1. I like the strategy but I’m very curious as to how C.J. Anderson will perform in the Panthers offense. Hopefully, if Anderson tears it up on the field, there is no problem giving him more and more touches. Between the two, this should be a stout running game.

  2. The kid has talent and is a weapon, get it to him however possible. Excited to see year two from this kid. Haters it’s all white to like this kid. Don’t hate, appreciate!

  3. I’ll assume he really meant “touches” not carries. #too-frailtokeeppounding

    ============

    He had 222 touches last season

  4. Nostradamus!

    Put him at slot like a Welker or Edelman. Great pass receiver, average RB.

  5. Rivera continues to prove he is clueless.
    McCaffrey does not have the body for an everyday RB
    If there ever was a player that was a write in for all pro slot receiver, McCaffrey is the one.

  6. The expectations when drafted and his first year performance remind me of Brian Westbrook. Westbrook was looked at as a 5 to 8 touch changeup not big enough to take a pounding. Sounds like McCaffrey. Get him the ball!

  7. The body has limits, I would recommend he increase his weight with the right muscle fat combo to the point where he doesn’t lose any bit of explosiveness, and ability to elude, Lesean Mccoy is a smaller guy and has been able to stay relatively healthy by avoiding the big hits. I don’t want McCaffrey to lose what makes him so good.

  8. How many seasons has little guy Darren Sproles lasted? McCaffery can to if managed properly. 200 carries versus 200 touches is the key.

  9. Rivera Offen says these things also remember

    LaDainian Tomlinson (L.T.)

    Position: RB

    5-10, 221lb

    LOOK UP his Rookie yrs

    2001 .. 339 Carries 1236 yrds
    2002..372 Carries 1682 yrds
    2003..313 Carries 1645 yards
    2004..339 Carries 1335 yards
    2005…339 carries 1462 yards

    Christian McCaffrey

    Position: RB

    5-11, 205lb ( look up the lasted pictures of CMC he is strong now than he was last yr )

    YEP IT Could happen

  10. McCaffrey has a lot of potential to grow as a player, but the thing making this suspect is not so much his individual ability as it is the departure of Andrew Norwell and the arrival of C.J. Anderson. Anderson can run between the tackles-that’s his game. McCaffrey does not need 200 carries to be effective, he just needs to touch the ball. The real threat is going to be when both he and Curtis Samuel are on the field together-both can catch out of the backfield (or run the ball outside effectively) or motion to a receiver spot on the line of scrimmage. Samuel played more receiver at Ohio State than McCaffrey did at Stanford, but he can do many of the same things McCaffrey does and having the two of them on the field with a mobile Cam Newton will make the middle of the field very up for grabs, especially on third downs.

    It’s good that McCaffrey has bulked up, I think, and I’m not sure handing the ball to him 200 times in a season is how he’ll end up utilized, but he will get his touches. Do not discount the production he has given Carolina or his potential to increase that potential.

    As a side note…everyone that claims they thought Kamara was a better prospect in the draft…I guarantee you that most people heard that the Saints drafted the back from Tennessee and said, “New Orleans drafted Jalen Hurd? BUST!” Kamara is good, but that doesn’t mean we saw that kind of production coming.

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