Christian McCaffrey sets record for most RB catches

We're in a new age of versatile backs. Christian McCaffrey is officially the face of it.

McCaffrey broke the NFL record for most catches made by a running back in a single season Sunday, reaching 106 receptions by the game's end. The previous record holder was Matt Forte, who finished with 102.

Perhaps even more impressive is who McCaffrey moved past a franchise legend for most receptions for a Panther at any position.

That's right, you guessed it: McCaffrey's 10th grab Sunday pushed him past Steve Smith. McCaffrey finished Sunday's game with 12 catches for 77 yards as the Panthers fell to the Falcons, 24-10.

Carolina drafted McCaffrey out of Stanford because of his multiple talents as a running back, in both running the ball (first outside and now also inside the tackles) and catching the ball in space. It's a wave that isn't exactly new, but has gained significant steam throughout the league. Le'Veon Bell rushed for 1,291 yards and nine touchdowns while also catching 85 passes for 655 yards last season. And McCaffrey just obliterated his total catches mark.

He also topped his father, former receiver Ed McCaffrey, whose season-high in his career was 101 catches. But the younger McCaffrey still has some achieving left to do before he can enter the same conversation as his dad.

"He's got a comeback, he's got three Super Bowls," McCaffrey said of his father. "So he's got me there. It's good man. I got lucky that they throw me the ball a lot and it's my job to make those catches."

It's his job indeed. And as the Panthers' season drags to a disappointing finish, he's a bright spot and a reason for optimism.

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