The Carolina Panthers’ season has gone in the wrong direction.
Matt Rhule was relieved of his head coaching duties at the start of Week of 6; wide receiver Robbie Anderson was quickly traded after a confrontation with coaches; and talk about star running back Christian McCaffrey possibly being on the trading block has ramped up.
When McCaffrey was asked about his current situation in Carolina, he said he is more focused on controlling the things he can. “Keeping that away from me. That’s out of my control. Trying to control everything I can control. Right now I’m a Carolina Panther and giving my all to this place,” McCaffrey said, per The Athletic.
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The No. 8 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft broke the 1,000 yard mark in rushing and receiving in 2019. He was named a first-team All-Pro in that season as well, but the last few seasons have been filled with injuries.
The good news is that McCaffrey has been healthy so far this season. The bad news is the Panthers appear to be headed into rebuild mode for the immediate future, and it is unclear where he would fit in the organization’s plans.
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The 26-year-old is averaging 4.6 yards per carry and has caught 33 passes for 227 yards through the first six weeks of the 2022 season. Lack of production at the quarterback position and now injuries have limited McCaffrey’s impact on the team’s win-loss record.
With Rhule’s dismissal, several teams around the league have reportedly called the Panthers to inquire about what it would take to potentially add McCaffrey’s services.
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According to an NFL.com report, general manager Scott Fitterer said the Panthers are willing to listen to offers, but they are not spending a lot of resources attempting to shop the running back.
Fitterer was retained as the team’s general manager after joining the club last year. He previously served at the vice president of football operations for the Seattle Seahawks.
McCaffrey said he isn’t worried about how much information the Panthers share with him about potential trade discussions.
“If they keep me in the loop — great. If not, it doesn’t matter,” he said. “Like I said, I’m focused on playing against the Bucs this week right now, and doing everything I can to prepare for that game.”
Tom Brady and the NFC South rival Tampa Bay Buccaneers travel to Charlotte, North Carolina, on Sunday to plays the Panthers.
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