Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey (ankle) out for season

Carolina Panthers star running back Christian McCaffrey is out for the rest of the 2021 season after suffering an ankle injury.

The team announced Monday that McCaffrey will be placed on injured reserve, ending his season.

CMC suffered the injury in Sunday's 33-10 blowout loss to the Miami Dolphins. He tried to return to the game but took just two snaps in the second half before being sidelined. All 10 of McCaffrey's carries for 35 yards came in the first two quarters.

Coach Matt Rhule said earlier Monday that initial X-rays on McCaffrey's sprained ankle came back negative. But an MRI later revealed enough damage to warrant another trip to IR.

The star running back missed five games earlier in the season due to a hamstring injury that sent him to IR. By rule, a player cannot return twice from IR in a single season.

McCaffrey generated 421 scrimmage yards and a touchdown on 68 touches in four games after returning. His season ends with 99 carries for 442 yards, 37 catches for 343 yards, and two total TDs.

After his 2,392-scrimmage yard season in 2019, McCaffrey has played in just 10 games the past two years due to injury.

With the dual-threat back sidelined for the rest of the season, the 5-7 Panthers will again lean on rookie Chuba Hubbard and Ameer Abdullah out of the backfield for their final five games.

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