This article is part of our Injury Analysis series.
McCaffrey's disappointing season continued in Week 14, as the Panthers running back missed his 10th game of the year. McCaffrey has endured multiple injuries this year including a high ankle sprain, an acromioclavicular (AC) sprain in his shoulder and now a quadriceps injury. Specifics regarding the nature of the problem are limited, but any injury to the quad can very limiting. The quadriceps is a muscle group comprising four different muscles. Collectively, they extend from the hip to the lower leg. This positioning makes the quad a "two-joint" muscle as it plays a role in both hip and knee motion, specifically flexion of the hip and extension (straightening) of the knee. Both quad strains and quad contusions can result in a functional limitation, preventing the injured individual from moving fluidly. The fact that McCaffrey has already missed one game suggests the injury is more moderate in nature.
Under normal circumstances, it would seem that he has a realistic shot to play in Week 15, especially if he can log a few practice reps. However, the Panthers could opt to call it a year for their franchise running back and shift their focus to the 2021 season. McCaffrey has tried to dismiss any possibility of being shut down for the season and admitted he wants to play if healthy. Leery fantasy managers will obviously be hesitant to trust in McCaffrey's availability, but he remains a must-play if he does suit up. Mike Davis will remain the feature back if