The NFL regular season is almost here and with it, fantasy football season. The Carolina Panthers are looking to bounce back after they missed the playoffs in 2018. They aren’t far removed from a Super Bowl appearance and still have a lot of the same talent on the roster. Even though their season ended with only seven wins, they did have one big bright spot.
Christian McCaffrey came on very strong in his second year with the team. He put up 1,965 all-purpose yards and scored 13 touchdowns. He is the epitome of a dual-threat running back, which makes him the perfect player for today’s NFL. With another year under his belt, McCaffrey should be even better heading into 2019.
Christian McCaffrey Fantasy Football Projections: Outlook & Preview
In PPR leagues, McCaffrey was the third-highest scorer in all of football behind Saquon Barkley and Patrick Mahomes for the 2018 season. There’s no reason to think that he’ll be any worse in 2019. There was a Cam Newton injury scare that would’ve either hurt or helped his value, but Newton is back at practice, so that shouldn’t affect things much.
McCaffrey gets it done on the ground and through the air. He rushed for over a thousand yards and caught over 800 yards last season. He’s the centerpiece of the Panthers’ offense and he should get heavy usage each game. According to Fantasy Pros, he’s the second-best prospect in all of football heading into 2019. It’s hard to argue with that assessment based on previous performances. While he wasn’t bad in his rookie season, he didn’t come out the gates swinging the same way an Ezekiel Elliott or Saquon Barkley did. However, he stepped up in a big way in 2018 and should only get better from there.
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When to Draft Christian McCaffrey in 2019 Fantasy Football
You shouldn’t let McCaffrey slip past the top-three picks. Barkley is still ahead of him because he’s pretty much the only thing that the New York Giant offense has going for it. McCaffrey still has the edge over Alvin Kamara because the New Orleans Saints are loaded with weapons and will probably be spreading the ball around quite a bit.
The Action Network projects McCaffrey to get 209 carries, 949 rushing yards and 6.6 rushing touchdowns. They also have him accumulating 88 receptions, 706 receiving yards and 5.2 receiving touchdowns. That’s a little less production than he had last year, but it would still put him in elite company.
If you’re able to snag McCaffrey early in the draft, you should be feeling pretty good heading into the season. He should be a source of consistent points week in and week out. He has also never missed a game in his two NFL years, so there’s not a lot of risks there. Cam Newton’s injury is a bit concerning because if that limits the quarterback’s abilities, there’s no telling what might happen with McCaffrey’s production. Even if Newton’s injury is affecting his play, McCaffrey should still see plenty of touches.