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I knew CMC had a lot of touches, but yikes....


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McCaffrey finished with 30 touches, tied for the fourth-highest total in his five-year career. But Rhule thought McCaffrey escaped relatively unscathed.

“Obviously, he had a lot of touches. But I didn’t feel like there was a lot of dominant contact,” Rhule said. “He had a lot of times he was tackled by the ankle or got out of bounds. I think he took two pretty good hits. I always try to monitor that.”

Like Rhule, The Athletic also rewatched all of McCaffrey’s 57 snaps (out of the Panthers’ 64 offensive reps) in Week 1. And though we counted a couple more big hits than Rhule did, the breakdown was pretty similar:

Of McCaffrey’s 30 touches:

• Four resulted in substantial contact.

• On 22 other plays, McCaffrey was taken to the ground, either by an ankle tackle or otherwise.

• And four other times McCaffrey either ran out of bounds, was wrapped up and the play was blown dead, or — on his last carry of the game — slid to keep the clock moving and avoided contact.

McCaffrey also had six pass-blocking plays when he took on a defender, none of which looked to be a bone-rattling collision (easy for us to say).

After the game, McCaffrey was asked whether he was prepared to handle 30 touches through a 17-game regular season.

“Yeah,” he said. “Ready to roll.”

Only 16 more to go.



From The Athletic 

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"Substantial contact"? I think the operating definition of "insubstantial contact" is probably "contact being absorbed by someone other than yourself".

Hell, anyone who's ever played sports knows that the visual impact of a play often doesn't tell the story of what that play FELT like. Sometimes you hop right back up from highlight reel hits while a rather mundane looking play hurt like hell.

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Rhule would be getting criticism for not using him when everyone sees how bad other running backs are compared to his impact. 30 touches with a significant portion of them being receptions really isn't a ton. There was a time when most RBs were getting 30+ carries consistently and against much more physical defenses who were allowed to play D. I'm not worried about McCaffrey's workload at all. The injuries last year were fluky, had nothing to do with workload, and he's shown he can handle the work in the past. 

Edited by t96
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