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Christian McCaffrey questionable for Week 12, but not expected to play vs. Vikings

Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey is working his way back from a shoulder injury. We break down what the means for Week 12.

Christian McCaffrey of the Carolina Panthers celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the third quarter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium on September 20, 2020 in Tampa, Florida. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Friday PM update: The Panthers have listed McCaffrey as questionable for Sunday, but head coach Matt Rhule is pessimistic the running back will play, per David Newton.

Wednesday PM update: Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said he does not expect McCaffrey to play in Week 12, per David Newton.

The Carolina Panthers welcomed Christian McCaffrey back to practice on Wednesday, albeit in a red non-contact jersey, per Bill Voth. The red jersey goes to injured players to allow them some semblance of participation while avoiding potential injury.

McCaffrey has been a DNP since suffering a shoulder injury late in the team’s Week 9 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. The game was his first back since suffering an ankle injury in Week 2. Mike Davis has started in McCaffrey’s place while he has work to recover from both injuries.

McCaffrey’s status is unclear for Sunday when the Panthers travel to face the Minnesota Vikings. Davis has been solid in his place, but is still a clear step-down in value to the Panthers overall offense. CMC will often be both leading rusher and pass catcher in a given game. Regardless of whether Teddy Bridgewater or P.J. Walker is starting at quarterback, getting McCaffrey back is key for the 4-7 squad.