Christian McCaffrey was an amazing all-rounder at Stanford who should have won the Heisman Trophy in college. He surprised some as the Panthers’ No. 8 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft and then immediately crushed him as a tough running back and dangerous wide receiver.
McCaffrey is the best running back in the league right now and it all started with his pedigree and production in an incredible high school career. The son of former Broncos Super Bowl champion and Pro Bowl wide receiver Ed McCaffrey starred in Valor Christian in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, a suburb of Denver.
Speed and athleticism have long been hereditary in the family, be it Ed, Christian’s mother Lisa (a former footballer and daughter of an Olympic sprinter) or paternal uncle Billy, who played basketball at Duke, where brother Christian’s, Max, also played soccer. like a fast wide receiver. Another brother, Dylan, now plays QB under head coach Ed at Northern Colorado, while the youngest, Luke, is now QB at Rice.
Here’s a look at how Christian, the best of all, saw his stardom grow during his teens:
MORE: Learn About McCaffrey’s Family Tree
Christian McCaffrey High School Statistics
While at Valor Christian (not named after him), McCaffrey (5-11, 205 pounds) played running back just like he does in the NFL, but he also played wide receiver (not surprising) and kicker. He also played basketball and was an outstanding track athlete.
During his playing career from 2010 to 2014, McCaffrey set state records for total TDs (141), receiving TDs (47) and all-purpose yards (8,845). He was named Colorado Gatorade Football Player of the Year twice in his junior and senior seasons.
Here’s a look at his year-by-year high school numbers, courtesy of MaxPreps:
First year (2010-11)
- Running yards: 934
- Rushed TDs: 14
- Receiving yards: 462
- TD reception: 7
- All Purpose Yards: 1,396
Second year (2011-12)
- Running yards: 1,153
- Rushed TDs: 22
- Receiving yards: 657
- TD reception: 10
- All-Purpose Yards: 1906
Junior year (2012-13)
- Running yards: 1390
- Rushed TDs: 223
- Receiving yards: 665
- TD reception: 14
- All Purpose Yards: 2,481
Senior year (2013-14)
- Running yards: 1,863
- Rushed TDs: 27
- Receiving yards: 721
- TD reception: 16
- All Purpose Yards: 3,032
Christian McCaffrey High School Highlights
McCaffrey was one of Valor Christian’s top 100 recruits with a four-star rating and he was still underrated. According to Rivals.com, he was the 77th best player overall, but the third best runner overall. He chose Stanford for the combination of strong athletics and great academics. It didn’t hurt that that was where Ed McCaffrey also played college football and met his mother Lisa.
What’s scary is that Christian keeps passing and running around NFL defenders with the same speed and speed that he showed by beating his best high school in college competition.
His recruiting film shows a technically solid and well-trained player. Christian learned well from Ed’s professionalism and his great success with another notable former Stanford superstar, John Elway. He has a good flurry between innings with a superior road run developed to match position with his exceptional hands.
McCaffrey seems to have an extra team, mentally and physically. He anticipates how the defenders will try to stop him and uses his explosiveness and elusiveness to win most of his battles in the open field. From the sizzling reels above to the least-viewed images, that’s fully on display.
Here’s McCaffrey’s impact on an entire game, the 2013 Colorado state championship played at hometown for the Broncos, where Ed played once. He is the most elaborate player on the field, in terms of body and mind.
Few players in any position can bring that presence smoothly from college to the NFL. The Panthers were fortunate to tap into a talent who is the best total defense the league has seen since Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk. If McCaffrey stays healthy for a few more seasons, he will also be on the fast track to Canton.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.