McCaffrey looks to cap historic season in Super Bowl LVIII
Christian McCaffrey has been considered one of the league's most versatile and dangerous running backs since entering the NFL in 2017. In two weeks, the 27-year-old will look to cap another MVP-calibre season with his first Super Bowl victory as the San Francisco 49ers take on the Kansas City Chiefs in Las Vegas.
McCaffrey was selected eighth overall by the Carolina Panthers in the 2017 NFL Draft, two years after the team fell to the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50. He split reps with Jonathan Stewart but still managed to break 1,000 scrimmage yards in his rookie year and led all running backs with 113 targets.
The Castle Rock, Colo., native would take over as the full-time starter in 2018 and go on to make second-team All-Pro in his sophomore season. McCaffrey went on to have a historic 2019 season, racking up 2,392 scrimmage yards and 19 touchdowns en route to first-team All-Pro honours. His single-season total was the third-most scrimmage yards in NFL history, trailing only Chris Johnson (2,509), and Marshall Faulk (2,429) on the all-time list.
Despite McCaffrey’s historic output, the Panthers would make the playoffs just once in his five seasons with the team.
After injuries limited McCaffrey to just combined games in 2020-21, he returned to Carolina at full health in 2021 before he was dealt to the 49ers midway through the season.
Running in Kyle Shanahan’s high-powered offence, McCaffrey regained his All-Pro form, posting 1,210 scrimmage yards and 10 touchdowns in 11 regular-season games with the Niners, leading the team to the NFC Championship.
Dominant 2023 Season
The Stanford product recorded his second 2,000 scrimmage-yard season in 2023, becoming only the third player in NFL history to record at least 2,000 scrimmage yards in a season for two different teams, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer running backs Faulk and Eric Dickerson.
McCaffrey led the league with 1,459 rushing yards and was second with 272 carries on the season. In two playoff games this season he’s averaged over 100 total yards per game and has scored four total touchdowns, leading the Niners to a berth in Super Bowl LVIII. He was named to the first All-Pro team for the second time in his career. McCaffrey is the only non-quarterback to be named a finalist for the MVP award this season.
The dual-threat tailback now owns the 49ers single-season record for touchdowns from scrimmage with 25, topping Jerry Rice’s record of 23, including both the regular season and playoffs.
If McCaffrey and the 49ers can win the big game at Allegiant Stadium on Feb. 11, he would join his father, Ed, who won the Super Bowl with the Niners in 1994. They would become the second father-son duo to win a Super Bowl with the same franchise, joining Steve and Zak DeOssie, who won with the New York Giants.
2023 season stats - 16 games
· 272 carries (second in the NFL), 1,459 rushing yards (first in the NFL), 14 rush touchdowns (fourth in the NFL)
· 67 receptions (third amongst running backs), 564 yards (second amongst running backs), seven receiving touchdowns (first amongst running backs)
McCaffrey’s 21 total touchdowns were the most among non-quarterbacks this season.
Career Stats - 91 games
· 1,297 carries, 6,185 rushing yards, 52 rush touchdowns
· 509 receptions, 4,320 yards, 29 touchdowns
Playoff Stats - 6 Games
· 83 carries, 442 yards, six touchdowns
· 29 receptions, 234 yards, two touchdowns