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Christian McCaffrey will miss the rest of the season

Matt Rhule says Cam Newton will start after the Panthers’ bye week, but Mike Florio and Mike Golic analyze why his unfamiliarity with the playbook could be a red flag when paired with his inconsistency so far.

Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey’s season is over.

The team announced that McCaffrey has been placed on injured reserve after hurting his ankle in Sunday’s loss to the Dolphins. It’s the second time he’s been placed on injured reserve this season and he will not be eligible to be activated a second time.

Head coach Matt Rhule said on Monday morning that X-rays were negative and that McCaffrey would go for further tests. The team’s announcement said that findings from an MRI led to the decision to put McCaffrey back on the injured reserve list.

It’s a major disappointment for a player who only played three games last season. He missed five games during his previous stint on injured reserve, so he’ll end this season having missed 23 of the last 33 games for the Panthers.

McCaffrey has a guaranteed salary of $8.1 million for the 2022 season, but there are no guarantees beyond that point and the last two seasons make it a lot less certain that he’ll be seeing out his current deal in Carolina.