Christian McCaffrey

San Francisco 49ers
Running Back #22
San Francisco 49ers
Running Back #22

Christian McCaffrey News

Cleared from injury report

McCaffrey (knee) doesn't have an injury designation for Sunday's game against the Dolphins, Jennifer Lee Chan of NBC Sports Bay Area reports.

Analysis: An irritated knee won't stop McCaffrey from playing, while fellow 49ers back Elijah Mitchell is out with a far more serious knee injury and in danger of missing the rest of the season. With rookies Jordan Mason and Tyrion Davis-Price the only RBs behind him on the depth chart -- unless Tevin Coleman is called up from the practice squad -- McCaffrey could be headed for a huge workload Sunday as long as his knee holds up. Fellow dual threat Deebo Samuel is questionable with a deep quad bruise and could come down to a game-time decision.

Dec 2, 2022 2:33 PM EST

Logs limited practice Thursday

McCaffrey (knee) went down as a limited participant at Thursday's practice, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Coach Kyle Shanahan relayed Monday that McCaffrey was dealing with knee irritation, which didn't allow him to practice Wednesday. In his return to drills Thursday, McCaffrey caught passes from quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and also appeared to sprint at full speed, per David Lombardi of The Athletic. Afterward, McCaffrey told Matt Barrows of The Athletic that he feels "great" and expects to suit up Sunday versus the Dolphins. However, based on his limited listing on the 49ers' second Week 13 injury report, McCaffrey still has a bit more to do to be available this weekend, which may be confirmed as soon as Friday.

Dec 1, 2022 4:50 PM EST

Present for practice

McCaffrey (knee) was working off to the side during the open portion of Thursday's practice, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: The extent of McCaffrey's participation in practice won't be known until the 49ers release their second injury report of the week later Thursday, but the running back looks as though he might be able to do more than he did Wednesday. The fact that McCaffrey was seen on a side field rather than with the main group could mean that he winds up going down as a non-participant for the second day in a row, even though he's donning pads and a helmet Thursday. The 49ers seem to be taking extra caution with McCaffrey while he manages what's believed to be a minor knee issue, but head coach Kyle Shanahan suggested Wednesday that he's tentatively planning on having the star tailback available for Sunday's matchup with the Dolphins.

Dec 1, 2022 1:19 PM EST

Not practicing

McCaffrey (knee) isn't practicing Wednesday, but coach Kyle Shanahan said he's hopeful the running back will play Sunday against Miami, David Lombardi of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: With Elijah Mitchell (knee) expected to miss the rest of the regular season, a McCaffrey absence would leave San Francisco's backfield in the hands of Jordan Mason, Tyrion Davis-Price and possibly Tevin Coleman, with WR Deebo Samuel also a candidate for increased contributions in the running game. It was Mason who took over after Mitchell and then McCaffrey suffered injuries this past Sunday against New Orleans, though Mason's status as the No. 3 back (which made him active for the game) may have had more to do with special teams than offense. In any case, the Niners hope to mostly avoid the situation by getting McCaffrey ready for a large workload this Sunday. The star running back reportedly is dealing with a sore/irritated knee, as opposed to the structural damage Mitchell suffered.

Nov 30, 2022 11:49 AM EST

Managing knee issue

McCaffrey will be managed day-to-day, as the running back is dealing with what coach Kyle Shanahan has described as knee irritation, Nick Wagoner of ESPN reports.

Analysis: At this stage, there's nothing to suggest that McCaffrey is in danger of missing Sunday's game against the Dolphins, but it appears as though his practice reps will be managed this week. With Elijah Mitchell slated to miss 6-to-8 weeks with an MCL injury, McCaffrey is in line continue to lead the 49ers' ground game in the coming weeks, with Jordan Mason and Tyrion Davis-Price set to work in change-of-pace/complementary roles and Tevin Coleman a candidate to be promoted from the 49ers practice squad.

Nov 28, 2022 3:48 PM EST

Dealt with knee soreness in win

McCaffrey rushed 11 times for 32 yards and caught four of six targets for 17 yards in Sunday's 13-0 win over the Saints.

Analysis: Head coach Kyle Shanahan stated that McCaffrey was dealing with knee soreness during the shutout win, which helps explain his meager production with 15 touches. The 26-year-old has a poor history with lower body injuries, so there is some reason for concern for fantasy managers. On a bright note, McCaffrey never officially went down with an injury and was being used on the 49ers' final drive to ice out the win. Elijah Mitchell (knee) might not have been as fortunate after leaving the contest in the second half and never returning. Assuming McCaffrey can overcome this bout with knee soreness, he could be in line for a heavy workload against the Dolphins on Sunday.

Nov 27, 2022 5:46 PM EST

Busy as pass catcher

McCaffrey rushed the ball seven times for 39 yards in Monday's 38-10 win over the Cardinals. He added seven receptions on seven targets for 67 yards.

Analysis: McCaffrey was bottled up on the ground and held under 40 rushing yards for the second consecutive game. He managed to salvage some fantasy value with his work as a pass catcher, as he finished second on the team in targets and tied for the lead in receptions. Given the blowout nature of the game, McCaffrey earned only four touches in the second half, which also cut into his ceiling. Even so, he's now managed to top 100 total yards in two of his three games as a 49er.

Nov 21, 2022 8:48 PM EST

Saves tough rushing day with TD

McCaffrey rushed 14 times for 38 yards and a touchdown while catching four of six targets for 39 yards in Sunday's 22-16 win over the Chargers.

Analysis: McCaffrey struggled to find running lanes against a porous rush defense, but he salvaged what would have been a quiet fantasy day with a short score in the second quarter. Projected 2022 starter Elijah Mitchell (knee) returned from IR in this contest and nearly split touches with his new teammate. Fantasy managers shouldn't worry about Mitchell's presence too much, as McCaffrey still received 18 touches with San Francisco's offense at full strength following the bye. The fantasy stud's managers will enjoy the benefit of a late-matchup scoring boost when the 49ers take on the Cardinals in Mexico City next Monday.

Nov 13, 2022 9:48 PM EST

Does it all for three scores

McCaffrey rushed 18 times for 94 yards and a touchdown while adding eight receptions (nine targets) for 55 yards and another score against the Rams on Sunday. He also completed his lone pass attempt for a 34-yard touchdown in a 31-14 win.

Analysis: It certainly didn't take long for head coach Kyle Shanahan to fully integrate McCaffrey into the gameplan after being forced to operate with a simplified playbook last week (10 touches). The versatile star threw his second career passing touchdown on an halfback pass trick play that left Brandon Aiyuk uncovered for an easy score. After the dust settled, McCaffrey combined for nearly 200 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns. The 26-year-old was already having a strong season, but getting traded to a team with an offensive-minded head coach and an actual threat of a passing game should have fantasy managers elated moving forward. Those same managers will have to find a replacement for McCaffrey in Week 9 while the 49ers are on a bye. San Francisco will return to action against the Chargers on Nov. 13.

Oct 30, 2022 5:16 PM EST

Receives 10 touches in SF debut

McCaffrey rushed eight times for 38 yards and caught both of his targets for 24 yards in Sunday's 44-23 loss to the Chiefs.

Analysis: McCaffrey was just traded to San Francisco on Thursday, so his availability and usage was in question heading into this matchup. Once the dust settled, the dual-threat star wound up essentially splitting running back duties with Jeff Wilson (7-54-0), resulting in lackluster fantasy lines for both players. The good news for McCaffrey's managers moving forward is that the unique talent will have a full week of practice in Kyle Shanahan's offense leading up to an NFC West showdown against the Rams next Sunday.

Oct 23, 2022 6:07 PM EST

To make debut with new team

McCaffrey is active for Sunday's contest against the Chiefs, Lindsey Pallares and Briana McDonald of the 49ers' official site report.

Analysis: Three days removed following his trade from Carolina to San Francisco, McCaffrey will be available to his new offense, which comes as no surprise after both Ian Rapoport of NFL Network and Adam Schefter of ESPN reported as much Saturday evening. Jay Glazer of FOX Sports noted earlier Sunday that McCaffrey was in line for about 20 snaps on offense in his debut with the team, so it appears he'll be working behind Jeff Wilson off the bat. On the season, McCaffrey is averaging 4.6 YPC on his 85 rushes and also hauled in 33 of 43 targets in six appearances, meaning he still could be productive with limited usage.

Oct 23, 2022 12:06 PM EST

In line for roughly 20 snaps

McCaffrey is in line for approximately 20 snaps Sunday against Kansas City, according to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports.

Analysis: McCaffrey was originally not expected to play this week after getting traded to the 49ers on Thursday, but he's caught on quickly by watching tape of every team meeting this week. After meeting with the coaching staff and studying the playbook, coach Kyle Shanahan decided to incorporate him into the game plan, but that exact role has been largely unknown. In his report, Glazer noted that 20 snaps is just the plan, but added a qualifier that it "could change depending how the game goes."

Oct 23, 2022 9:31 AM EST

Expected to suit up Sunday

McCaffrey is expected to play Sunday against Kansas City, according to both Ian Rapoport of NFL Network and ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Analysis: Per Schefter, the 49ers have a package of plays in store for McCaffrey, who has been in the process of absorbing the team's playbook since being traded from the Panthers on Thursday. With that in mind, it remains to be seen what sort of of volume McCaffrey is in line for in his looming debut with the 49ers, though it appears he'll have a chance to make his mark in Week 7, with fellow RB Jeff Wilson also a candidate to remain a factor Sunday.

Oct 23, 2022 6:34 AM EST

Expected to play in Week 7

McCaffrey is expected to make his debut with the 49ers on Sunday against the Chiefs, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: McCaffrey's status was ambiguous after he was acquired by San Francisco late Thursday night. He joined the team Friday and has been learning the playbook since. Assuming he is officially active, it's unclear how involved McCaffrey will be in the offense, though presumably, the 49ers will look to get him involved at key points in the game. Jeff Wilson could also maintain a regular role in the offense in the short term.

Oct 22, 2022 7:16 PM EST

Availability for Week 7 uncertain

Coach Kyle Shanahan said Friday that McCaffrey is "still up in the air" to make his 49ers debut versus the Chiefs on Sunday, Cam Inman of The San Jose Mercury News reports.

Analysis: The 49ers parted ways with second, third and fourth-round picks in 2023 and a 2024 fifth-round pick in order to trade for McCaffrey from the Panthers on Thursday, and while Ian Rapoport of NFL Network suggested that the dual-threat running back could be available in red zone packages for San Francisco in Week 7, Shanahan hasn't made a final decision on his status for Sunday's contest against Kansas City. The final say on McCaffrey's prospects for Week 7 may come down to the wire, but it should only be a matter of time before he picks up the playbook and solidifies himself as lead option in Shanahan's high-octane backfield scheme. Needless to say, McCaffrey's arrival signals a coming decline in touches for Jeff Wilson, as well as dampening the prospects of Elijah Mitchell (knee) when he eventually returns from IR.

Oct 21, 2022 8:43 AM EST

Set to join new team

McCaffrey, who is slated to travel to San Francisco on Friday after being traded from the Panthers to the 49ers, is expected to be available for Sunday's game against Kansas City, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: The report suggests that McCaffrey -- who was sent to the 49ers for second, third and fourth-round picks in 2023 as well as a fifth-rounder in 2024 -- will likely be used in a red zone package Sunday, if he does suit up versus the Chiefs. Beyond Week 7, once McCaffrey is up to speed with his new team's playbook, the dual threat back should record ample touches in San Francisco's offense, a context that will result in Jeff Wilson -- who has logged 81 carries in six games to date -- moving to a complementary role.

Oct 21, 2022 6:20 AM EST

Headed west

McCaffrey was traded by the Panthers to the 49ers in exchange for draft picks Thursday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.

Analysis: McCaffrey had been the subject of trade rumors for much of the preseason, and Carolina's struggles early in the regular season did nothing to quiet those talks. He'll now be headed west to lead a San Francisco backfield that had been led by Jeff Wilson to this point in the campaign. Even in an abysmal offense, McCaffrey has managed 393 rushing yards, 277 receiving yards and three total touchdowns through six games. He'll now be in line for a significant upgrade in team offense and will be locked in as the lead back for the 49ers.

Oct 20, 2022 8:24 PM EST

One-man offense in loss

McCaffrey carried the ball 13 times for 69 yards and caught seven of eight targets for 89 yards in Sunday's 24-10 loss to the Rams.

Analysis: The star running back got almost no help from the rest of the Panthers roster -- every other pass-catcher combined for only six receptions and 30 receiving yards while the team's other runners managed just 24 yards on the ground, and Carolina's only touchdown on the day was provided by the defense. McCaffrey will likely remain the center of both the offensive game plan and trade rumors heading into a Week 7 clash with the Saints.

Oct 16, 2022 5:03 PM EST

Team listening to trade offers

The Panthers are listening to trade pitches on McCaffrey, but Carolina has been adamant about holding on to the running back past the Nov. 1 deadline if it isn't offered a high draft pick or multiple draft picks in return, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.

Analysis: Sitting at 1-4 heading into Sunday's game against the Rams and having recently fired head coach Matt Rhule, the Panthers no longer profile as playoff contenders for 2022, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the team will embrace a fire sale of its top players. According to Schefter, the Panthers have already rebuffed at least two teams' inquiries into trading for McCaffrey within the past week, and it looks as though a significant compensation package may be needed to pry the 26-year-old tailback away from Carolina. The Panthers at least made facilitating a potential trade for McCaffrey easier earlier this offseason, when his base salary was lowered to $1.04 million, a figure that should fit under any team's cap without much difficulty.

Oct 16, 2022 9:25 AM EST

Another 100-plus scrimmage yards

McCaffrey carried the ball 14 times for 54 yards and a touchdown and caught seven of 12 targets for 50 yards in Sunday's 37-15 loss to the 49ers.

Analysis: It's the fourth straight game in which McCaffrey topped 100 scrimmage yards and he was the only Carolina player to get into the end zone, scoring on a 19-yard scamper early in the third quarter. The Panthers' offensive struggles haven't impacted the star running back's production this season, but he could be working with a new quarterback in Week 6 if Baker Mayfield's ankle injury proves not to be minor.

Oct 9, 2022 6:31 PM EST

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