Panthers’ McCaffrey made this year due to ankle

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CHARLOTTE, NC – Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey will miss the rest of the season due to a left ankle injury sustained in the first half of Sunday’s 33-10 loss to the Miami Dolphins.

The first x-rays on Sunday indicated that the injury did not appear to be too serious, coach Matt Rhule said Monday morning. But an MRI scan later in the morning revealed that the injury was enough to place McCaffrey at the end of the season on injured reserve because of the time it would take for him to recover.

The Panthers (5-7) are on a farewell this week, so McCaffrey is missing the last five games of the regular season. He has already missed five games this season with a hamstring injury sustained in week 3. He missed 13 games last season with multiple injuries.

Since signing a $ 64 million four-year extension that made him the highest-paid running back in NFL history, McCaffrey will only have played in 10 of 33 games by the end of this season.

His most recent injury occurred in the second quarter on Sunday. McCaffrey did not play the last series of the half and only played a snap in the second half before being shut down completely.

He saw his row of 57 consecutive matches catch at least one pass, draw in the longest row of a run back with Theo Reddick from 2014 to 2018, end on Sunday.

Since 2019, when McCaffrey became the third player in NFL history to have 1,000 yards rushing and receiving in the same season, the eighth pick in the 2017 draft has only 1,159 combined yards – 667 rushing and 492 receiving.

McCaffrey showed up in full form after returning from the hamstring injury. He had 421 yards from scrimmage on 68 touchdowns in the last four weeks as the Panthers monitored his snap count more closely.

He finishes the 2021 season with 442 yards rushing and 343 receiving in seven games.

With McCaffrey out, look for rookie Chuba Hubbard and Ameer Abdullah to share the backfield tasks. Hubbard was leading when McCaffrey was out with a hamstring injury and rushed 329 yards in five games.

Abdullah was the focal point Sunday after McCaffrey was injured when the Panthers abandoned the race to play catch-up. He was targeted six times but had only two catches in 20 yards.

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