Carolina Panthers All-Pro running back Christian McCaffrey can’t get back on the field.
With the Panthers sitting at 4-9 ahead of this Saturday’s matchup against the Green Bay Packers, maybe he should stop trying to return until next September.
ESPN’s David Newton and others have reported that Carolina head coach Matt Rhule does not expect to have McCaffrey available this weekend. The 24-year-old was limited in a walkthrough because of what was listed as a thigh injury.
Recent history suggests that means McCaffrey will be a spectator for the 11th time across the past 12 contests.
McCaffrey’s injury woes began when he was sidelined by a high-ankle sprain during the Week 2 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers that kept him out of action until the Week 9 game versus the Kansas City Chiefs on Nov. 8. He hasn’t played again since he picked up a shoulder injury in that defeat.
Last week, McCaffrey was bothered by a sore quad that prevented him from participating in Sunday’s 32-27 loss to the Denver Broncos. As has been the case for the bulk of the season, veteran Mike Davis was Carolina’s lead ball-carrier against Denver and tallied 51 rushing yards and a pair of scores on the ground. Davis also recorded five receptions for 42 yards.
Caroling is facing an inevitable elimination from playoff contention and will soon be out of reasons to put McCaffrey back in the rotation until 2021.