3 Greatest Running Backs in Panthers History

By michael obermuller
Is Christian McCaffrey the best running back in Panthers history after three seasons in the league?
Is Christian McCaffrey the best running back in Panthers history after three seasons in the league? / Chris Graythen/Getty Images
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The Carolina Panthers are one of the NFL's younger franchises, having had their first season in 1995. The Panthers have yet to win their first Super Bowl, but they have already appeared in it twice, making it in 2003 and 2015.

They have had a few great running backs over their short history, but these three stand out the most as the best Panthers running backs ever.

Best Panthers RBs of All-Time

3. Jonathan Stewart (2008-17)

Jonathan Stewart gave the Panthers all you could ask for in terms of dependability and longevity.
Jonathan Stewart gave the Panthers all you could ask for in terms of dependability and longevity. / Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The greatest rushing accumulator for the Panthers was the consistent and reliable Jonathan Stewart. He currently holds the record for total franchise rushing yards with 7,318, although he was never much of a receiving back. Stewart's 51 rushing touchdowns are second only to Cam Newton, and he averaged 55.9 rushing yards per game (YPG) and 4.3 per attempt. The long-time Panthers rusher also made the Pro Bowl in 2015.

2. Christian McCaffrey (2017-present)

Christian McCaffrey is now the face of the franchise in Carolina.
Christian McCaffrey is now the face of the franchise in Carolina. / Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images

Through just three seasons in the league, Christian McCaffrey is making a case for best Carolina running back of all-time. "C-Mac" is one of the greatest dual threats the game has ever seen, as both a phenomenal rusher and receiver. He currently averages 60.8 rush YPG and 52.6 receiving YPG with a 79.9 percent catch rate. A First-Team All-Pro and Pro Bowler in 2019 (plus a Second-Team All-Pro player in 2018), McCaffrey was considered for Offensive Player of the Year last season (but lost to some stout competition). He is likely to rank first on this list sooner than later if he can keep up this level of play and lead Carolina to success.

1. DeAngelo Williams (2006-14)

DeAngelo Williams still holds this honor for a short while longer.
DeAngelo Williams still holds this honor for a short while longer. / Larry French/Getty Images

The man clinging to the No. 1 spot for likely what will be only a little while longer is DeAngelo Williams, who was Stewart's backfield teammate for a long stretch with Carolina. Williams was more of the dynamic back during that span, and while he had fewer total rushing yards than Stewart, he had more all-purpose yardage per season. Williams also had more rushing YPG at 58.5, including a higher clip of 4.8 per attempt (which even tops McCaffrey's mark of 4.7). The two-time NFL rushing touchdowns leader (2008, 2015) had 46 scores on the ground as a Panther, and he was awarded one Pro Bowl (2009) and one Second-Team All-Pro recognition (2008). He is the greatest Carolina running back for now, but probably not for long.


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Michael Obermuller is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Michael Obermuller also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username king_mizzard. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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