The injury bug hit Christian McCaffrey about as hard as it could in 2020. With three separate injuries, the Panthers’ superstar running back was limited to just three games on the season.
This disappointing campaign for the fourth-year running back came just one season after he lit up the NFL with one of the most impressive offensive performances of all time. Becoming just the third player in league history to do so, McCaffrey logged 1,000+ yards in both rushing and receiving.
So now, there’s one question everyone is asking heading into 2021. Will he be able to return to what he once was?
Carolina offensive coordinator Joe Brady doesn’t seem to worried about his superstar’s return.
“The mindset has not changed with Christian McCaffrey. You can obviously feel the difference when Christian is out on the football field. You see the production of it,” Brady said in a video posted by ESPN’s David Newton. “But I told Christian, I don’t need Christian to be anything more than Christian McCaffrey. I think that’s important for him to know, that he doesn’t have anything to prove to me, to prove to anybody else — he just needs to be Christian McCaffrey.
“When he’s coming out here, the work ethic that he’s putting into it, it’s impressive. Every day, there’s examples that he’s putting on tape that I want everybody to be like, ‘Hey, we’ve got to play like this.’”
In just his three game appearances in 2020, McCaffrey recorded 225 rushing yards, 149 passing yards and six total touchdowns.
Needless to say, if he can return to full strength for at least the majority of the 2021 season — McCaffrey could be in for a year that rivals his All-Pro season in 2019.