CMC to the SF 49ers changes the NFC

The San Francisco 49ers shook up the NFC with a big time trade. The Niners picked up a career 7,272 total yards RB, Christian McCaffrey and the Panthers got 2nd, 3rd, and 4th rd picks in the 2023 draft, and a 5th in 2024. Making a move like this in the NFC immediately changes the horizon.  The Eagles were looking like, and still are, based off of what they’ve been putting on the field, I would think it’s fair to say that they are still the favorite in the NFC. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some teams that can easily slip in there. The Niners have been looked at as a defensive lead team this season giving up just 14.8 points per game and with their defense they have been sitting at just a 3-3 record as of this article. The offense, although with its share of very talented players, just has not been what I think that San Francisco fans were hoping for. And that is what they needed to improve on, and with this trade that is what they went and did. 

There are some critics of the trade thinking that the Niners gave up far too much for a running back who has had his share of injury problems. But to me this looks more like a win-win trade in my opinion. Carolina is a roaring tire fire and needs some draft capital to really start rebuilding that team. San Francisco has a team currently that can compete and make some noise in the NFC and they have depth, so right now, I don’t think that drafting is their number one priority – they have a team that just got better and will be the VegasTopDogs favorite in the NFC. 

McCaffrey finds himself now in a much different position than he has ever been in before in his career. Now granted, he has missed a whopping 23 games since 2020 – but when you’re a player who literally carries the team on your back and he touches the ball on what seems to be 80% of snaps there’s a higher chance of being hurt. Now McCaffrey is on a team where there’s a lot of talent around them he’s not going to have to carry as much of the load as he was. In Carolina, there really wasn’t a whole lot of support, the QB situation was not good, there was not a good TE situation, their offensive line was terrible, he’s going to fit in and be just fine in San Francisco. He’s not the only weapon the Niners have which will be a good thing for the 26 yr old RB.

He is a generational RB, who put up 1000+ yards rushing in 2018 and 2019 along with 1,872 receiving yards in that time frame as well, to go along with his 32 total touchdowns. He has put out jaw dropping performances with 7 games of 100 yards or more rushing, along with 35 or more receiving. He has also had 17 games of 70 or more receiving, and some think this guy isn’t worth these picks?
That’s crazy talk to me. 
Who are the Niners going to get better than him in that draft? 
I’ll tell you. 

This is a player that was looked at as the ultimate weapon for several years, his ability to hit the hole and take off with explosive speed was outstanding. Adding on top of that his exceptional hands and his ability to run routes. People need to remember that he caught 100 or more receptions twice and this is a RB, this isn’t a WR1. He won’t be used like that in San Fran, which should help him last longer and quite honestly, he could be even more effective.  He won’t be forced to be the focal point of the offense now with the likes of Deebo, along with an improving Brandon Aiyuk. And of course, we can’t forget about their Pro Bowl tight end Greg Kittle and the fact that San Francisco finds ways to get their running backs in the best positions they can be. Undrafted RB, Jeff Wilson ran for 4.8+ YPC in 2 of the last 3 seasons, journeyman Matt Breida ran for 5.0 YPC avg in his 3 years in San Fran – I certainly think Christian McCaffrey will be more than fine in their running scheme. 

The NFC Conference looks a lot different now with their SuperBowl Odds. San Francisco was already looked at as a likely playoff team with a stud defense, and now just adding more firepower to their offense, they certainly have the appearance of a team that legitimately can go to the Bowl this year. This trade means the Niners are all in for a ring this season. I doubt the 49ers will end up regretting this. If you are a team that feels you have what it takes to be a champion you have to take some risks, like the great hockey legend Wayne Gretzky once said – “you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

How Khalil Mack has changed the Bears

The Chicago Bears picked up the 27 year old Khalil Mack – to bring to their roster. When they grabbed him – the Bears immediately thought Mack would be the answer to their unsuccessful and poor season woes. Mack went to a team with a proud history, and Mack has an amazing track record, that has immediately brought a great defensive presence to the Chicago organization. With 231 tackles and 40.5 sacks with the Raiders, and an incredible head for the game, over the previous 4 seasons – it was something the Bears certainly wanted to have on their struggling team.
The Bears had played many of the previous seasons without great offensive threats, with a low ended offensive team – but then they brought in Mack to immediately upgrade their already high ranked defensive squad to improve an already solid defense. Khalil has been playing great for the Raiders – and was contributing immensely for them, before being traded to Chicago.
The Chicago Bears have lacked a truly powerful presence on the defensive side of the ball for numerous seasons. Getting Khalil Mack was almost like a dream come true. Khalil brings a very real, and very serious threat to their opponents.
The Bears have only had 2 seasons of 10+ wins since 2007 – and that isn’t a good thing for any team to have hanging over their heads.
With that, the Bears haven’t been able to finish games with overwhelming defense and a bad offense. Since 2007 they have only had 4 seasons ranking in the top 10 for opponents ppg defense. And the Bears haven’t had a truly dominant defensive player since the likes of Richard Dent, Steve McMichael or a LB like Brian Urlacher. For a proud and gritty team like Chicago that has always had an enterprise for defense and brought fear to opponents, that is unacceptable.
They desperately needed a serious option for the team to look to – to make the big play, the big stop when needed – Chicago had just 1 season of 42 or more sacks since 2013 – adding Mack will immediately help them improve that and be able to terrify opponents for years to come. The team is already expected for 50+ sacks for this season. Khalil has gotten the Bears team ready to take the next steps, with great energy and an amazing motor. They have not always made the best defensive adjustments for the team recently,  but Mack brings excellent defensive leadership and a great leader to the team. Chicago can now change things up by picking up their pace or even by throwing in an unexpected blitzes through the game.
There’s something very hopeful about a team that makes the big moves, has a healthy roster, and has a new young coach in Matt Nagy who knows the game more for today’s style, and is much more open to ideas, that has to get teams more concerned. When the Chicago Bears are invading opponents on the field teams pay attention. Khalil Mack is going to instantly change the culture of Chicago Bears – and the Bears defensive system is built for his aggressive style.
There is really is no other way to win the big time game unless a team goes for the jugular; with Khalil Mack and a new offense with some spark, they will now be able to. This team is one that was slightly better than its 5-11 record in 2017, and given the supporting cast around their young QB, Mitch Trubisky – adding Khalil Mack to their already good D is going to get them over the hump, and fervently make the move to get to the postseason for the first time since 2010.
Mack is one of the best defensive players in the game – and very dangerous to offenses and any other player he goes up against. Teams will not be able to handle his speed and his power and will not be able to match up vs his skills. The 6-3 DE is a silky smooth player who brings great talent and a proud game back to the Chicago Bears. With a defensive TD, 4 forced fumbles, and 5 sacks over 5 games this year, Mack has delivered a truckload of abuse and has been monstrosity to a middling team that has needed a defensive leader for some time. The other teams in the division are in for a tough time dealing with Da Bears and their dominant pass rusher for years to come.
Mack has found a fantastic landing spot for himself, going to Chicago – I fully expect Mack to bring a great future to the Chicago Bears – in a very short time.  This is a positive move for Chicago – as they have put up just an average of 7-9 record since 2011, and haven’t won a division title since 2010. Simply put, Khalil Mack has and will, deliver when the pressure gets at its greatest for this team.