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Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Christian McCaffrey Makes the 49ers Playoff Contenders

Oct 21, 2022 at 6:25 AM--

The 49ers traded three 2023 draft picks (second, third, and fourth) and a 2024 fifth-round pick for running back Christian McCaffrey. McCaffrey was a former first-round pick by the Carolina Panthers in 2017. Though he has a history of injuries, he instantly makes the 49ers a playoff contender.

Christian McCaffrey is a duel threat in NFL. Rushing McCaffrey has two touchdowns, 393 yards, and has averaged 4.6 yards per attempt through six games this season. According to ESPN, McCaffrey is ranked 13th in rushing, giving the 49ers a top 15 running back in the league.

Receiving, McCaffrey is the number one pass-catching back in the NFL. He has 33 receptions on 43 targets for 277 yards and one touchdown.

McCaffrey is the running back that head coach Kyle Shanahan has never had. The former 1000-yard rusher and 1000-yard pass catcher can spruce up the offense and add another dimension to coach Shanahan's scheme and play calling. 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo will have the most significant check-down option ever. Expect to see screenplays, outside zone runs, and wheel routes with the addition of McCaffrey.

Adding the All-Pro running back will give opposing defenses nightmares. Shanahan will force defenses to match up, and this could cause a lot of headaches for defensive coordinators. Teams will have to plan to stop McCaffrey in the run and the passing game.

Shanahan has better options to choose his poison on any specific play. With 21 personnel (McCaffrey, Kyle Juszczyk, George Kittle, Deebo Samuel, and Brandon Aiyuk), the 49ers will have five powerful weapons on the field. Three of them are All-Pros. One could argue four are, but there is no All-Pro at the fullback position.

This move makes the 49ers playoff contenders while sitting at 3-3. The 49ers will be adding running back Elijah Mitchell to the mix after the bye week, and the team will potentially have one of the most fierce running back groups in the league.

Expect McCaffrey to suit up and play on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs. Limited or not, CMC will be a massive factor in the game. The 49ers turned it up another notch, and in the famous words of Emeril Lagasse, "Bam!"
  • Written by:
    Wayne Breezie is a 49ers content creator. He had his first guest appearance on Ronbosports in 2012. He began writing for a Facebook group called the League of the 49ers. Next, he began writing for Nothing But Niners in 2017. In 2018, Wayne Breezie made his debut on YouTube’s Nothing But Niners show. In 2019, he started his podcast called Nitty Gritty Niners. After putting the pen down for several years, Breezie saw an opportunity to write for 49erscap.com. His first published article was in January of 2022 with 49ersCap, and he currently writes and produces weekly podcasts.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


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