Christian McCaffrey ‘locked in’ on 49ers football amidst RB contract frustrations

Jul 25, 2023, 2:00 PM | Updated: 2:24 pm

Christian McCaffrey #23 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates after a game against the Los Angeles ...

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 30: Christian McCaffrey #23 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates after a game against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium on October 30, 2022 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Running back Christian McCaffrey has had a hectic 2023 off-season, to say the least.

The San Francisco 49er has split time between training and traveling the world with his new fiancé, Olivia Culpo. On top of that, the running back has been vocal in some serious contract disputes regarding other tailbacks around the league. And while McCaffrey is still focused on getting the positional value back to former standards, he’s more than happy to turn the page to a new chapter of 49ers football.

“I support my brothers. I think those guys are worth way more than what they’re getting,” McCaffrey told the media Tuesday. “As far as a solution goes, I wish I had an answer. I think just starting the conversation is important… Right now, it’s training camp and it’s time for me to lock in on some 49ers football and doing what I can to help the team.”

Now turning the page, CMC is excited to undergo his first full season with San Francisco. The Pro Bowl RB was traded midseason in 2022, having to grasp the playbook on the fly last season. In hindsight, the Stanford alum did pretty well for himself, finishing with almost 1,900 scrimmage yards. But now with a full offseason in the regime, he hopes to get the most out of each and every day he’s in the building.

“I think OTAs were really important for me this year, just being able to understand what [the coaches] are trying to accomplish, way more in-depth, not week-to-week… I definitely feel better going into camp, not Week 7 [last season],” McCaffrey stated.

That understanding came into effect from the first snap in spring workouts, running full speed through each drill. While other RBs look to pace themselves in the offseason, not McCaffrey. Simply because that’s not his style.

“I really practice at one speed,” McCaffrey explained. “That’s really been my philosophy, my mindset, try to win every rep.”

That mentality, along with his physical gifts, are what make him such a compelling player for coach Kyle Shanahan & Co. As the 49ers’ quest for their sixth Super Bowl ring continues, CMC knows this team has a chance to go all the way. But just like his daily philosophy, patience is a virtue, looking to get one step closer to their goals each day.

“It’s exciting, I’m happy to be a part of a stacked team, a bunch of great coaches, great players, great staff. But like I said, just focused on one day at a time,” McCaffrey said.

San Francisco got a little stronger Tuesday as well, welcoming quarterback Brock Purdy back as he looks to begin training camp Thursday after offseason elbow surgery. While all four QBs will have a chance to impress in August, the players are excited, nonetheless, to see Mr. Irrelevant back on the field.

“That’s awesome. I think everybody was fired up to hear that. It’s a testament to him,” Christian McCaffrey said about Purdy. “All he’s done is work, so that fact that he’s ready to go is exciting for all of us.”

One of the tone-setters for the team, CMC has indirectly inspired wide receiver Deebo Samuel to get back into the best shape of his playing career this offseason. After a self-proclaimed “awful” 2022 season, Samuel is determined to get back to his All-Pro self during training camp. A time, at least according to Christian McCaffrey, when you really prepare for the long season ahead.

“I think this period is about developing a callousness for the season,” he said. “There’s going to be days where you have to push through things and there’s going to be days to lean off but that’s why we have such a great staff who’s in charge of that. They’ve made it so easy in OTAs for me and for other guys.”

Click here to watch Christian McCaffrey’s full presser.

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