Christian McCaffrey could’ve been a Buffalo Bill.
According to a report from NFL Insider Adam Caplan, the reigning AFC East champs reached out to Carolina earlier this offseason in an attempt to trade for McCaffrey. Caplan went on to say that the Panthers did not entertain the offer and insisted that McCaffrey wasn’t available.
Chances are, that’s partially true. While the Panthers rebuffed the Bills’ offer, they likely did so only because Buffalo wasn’t offering enough in the way of compensation. Earlier this year, OutKick passed along news that rival teams were checking in on the availability of McCaffrey, but were turned off by Carolina’s exorbitant price tag.
— Joe Dolan (@FG_Dolan) May 11, 2022
It’s easy to see why Buffalo would be interested. Though McCaffrey has missed 23 of 33 games over the last two years due to injury, he remains one of the league’s most gifted playmakers and is still only 25 years old.
In his five pro seasons, McCaffrey’s been named All-Pro twice, accumulated more than 6,500 total yards, scored 47 touchdowns and hauled in 357 receptions. Injuries aside, the only negative surrounding McCaffrey – and it’s a big one – is his hefty contract.
McCaffrey’s on the books for $8.75 million in 2022 and more than $19 million per season in 2023 and 2024. That number drops to just more than $15 million in 2025, the final year of a four-year, $64 million extension he signed in 2020.
Had Carolina and Buffalo struck a deal, fantasy football would’ve become reality. Buffalo’s already explosive offense would have rolled out a lineup featuring Josh Allen at QB, Stefon Diggs at wide receiver and the NFL’s version of a Swiss Army knife, McCaffrey, toting the rock.
After missing out on McCaffrey, Buffalo opted to select Georgia running back James Cook – brother of Vikings RB Dalvin Cook – in the second round of April’s Draft.
Not a bad consolation prize for those Bills fans who had Carolina on their mind.
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