The Carolina Panthers traded the star running back Christian McCaffrey to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for draft picks, Adam Schefter of ESPN reported on Thursday. 

According to Schefter, The Panthers receive a 2nd round pick in 2023, the 3rd round pick in 2023 and the 4th Round pick of 2023 along with a 5th Round pick in the 2025 NFL Draft.

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This is a massive trade by the 49ers who have one of the best defenses in the league but often struggle on the offensive side of the football. The 49ers are the fifth-best defensive unit in the league and have given up an average of just 14.3 points per game. 

The 49ers now have a good unit of running backs in their squad with Jordan Mason and Kyle Juszczyk. The team also has WR Deebo Samuel at offense and tight end George Kittle also provided the team with steady offensive play.

Christian McCaffrey was one of the most sought-after players in this year’s fantasy football. Many football managers who had the second pick took McCaffrey. The Panthers were in trade talks with many teams like Buffalo Bills, San Francisco 49ers, Los Angeles Rams and Denver Broncos but ultimately went to the 49ers.

McCaffrey only has a base salary of $1.035 million this season so it won’t be difficult for the team to fit in the team’s salary cap.

The No. 8 overall pick out of Stanford in the 2017 NFL draft, McCaffrey enjoyed one of the most dominant seasons by a running back in NFL history that year, rushing for 1,387 yards and 15 touchdowns, along with catching 116 passes for 1,005 yards and four touchdowns. He led the NFL in touches, total yards from scrimmage and total touchdowns that season.

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However, the player only appeared in 10 games in the last two seasons due to injuries. This season, McCaffrey has appeared in all six games for the Panthers, rushing for 393 yards and two touchdowns on 85 carries while also catching 33 passes for 277 yards and a TD.

Poor quarterback play from Baker Mayfield and P.J. Walker, along with a mid-season firing of Head Coach Matt Rhule was considered to be one of the main reasons why the RB wanted a trade.

Earlier this week, the Panthers had also traded WR Robbie Anderson to the Arizona Cardinals in exchange for a 2024 sixth-round draft pick and a 2025 seventh-round draft pick.