Christian McCaffrey was injured in Panthers’ game vs Texans. Here’s the latest.

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Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey was knocked out of Thursday night’s game with a hamstring injury.

McCaffrey suffered the injury in the second quarter against the Texans. A replay showed him pull up as he ran for a two-yard gain with 12:13 left before halftime.

McCaffrey immediately went to the team’s medical tent to be looked at by a trainer. He did not emerge from the tent for 22 minutes before heading to the locker room.

That McCaffrey was ruled out so quickly is a cause for concern. The Panthers led the Texans 7-0 at the time of the injury and won 24-9.

The star running back missed a portion of the Panthers’ game against the Saints last Sunday after dealing with cramps. He went back to the locker room to get an IV, but returned in the fourth quarter and played the rest of the way. Panthers coach Matt Rhule said Thursday night that the injuries were unrelated.

Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey, left, walks to the locker room with team athletic trainer Jean-Baptise Laporte after a hamstring injury during the game against the Texans at NRG Stadium on Thursday, September 21, 2021 in Houston, TX.
Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey, left, walks to the locker room with team athletic trainer Jean-Baptise Laporte after a hamstring injury during the game against the Texans at NRG Stadium on Thursday, September 21, 2021 in Houston, TX.

McCaffrey’s high usage has been a topic of discussion for years. He’s the Panthers’ go-to player in the passing and running game, and he missed 13 games last season after dealing with an AC joint injury, a high-ankle sprain and a quad injury.

Through the first two games this season, he had 59 touches. Before the injury, he had nine touches Thursday (7 carries for 31 yards, 2 catches for 9 yards). The Panthers will likely continue to use rookie Chuba Hubbard and backup Royce Freeman in his place.

The Panthers’ offense had a net gain of 17 yards from the time McCaffrey went out until halftime Thursday, allowing Houston to cut their lead to 7-6 before the break.

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