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49ers' Christian McCaffrey on fantasy football, life with Olivia Culpo and his favorite Aston Martin

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“There’s a lot more that goes into the game than what people see. It’s pretty frowned upon to talk about fantasy football.



(Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Every Sunday, fans around the world tune into the National Football League to watch the San Francisco 49ers’ Christian McCaffrey fire up the grill like no other.

It’s not hyperbole to say that CMC is one of the most electric and explosive players of all time. After breaking high school (Colorado) and college (Stanford) records, he was drafted 8th overall in 2017 by the Carolina Panthers and quickly became one of only three players to record 1 000 rushing yards and 1,000 receiving yards in the same season.

In 2020, Christian was voted 6th overall by his fellow players on the NFL’s Top 100 list and was rewarded with a four-year/$64 million extension by the Panthers, making him running back. highest paid in NFL history. Notably, shortly after our interview, McCaffrey was blessed by the football gods when the Panthers traded him to the 49ers for a series of draft picks, giving him a rare chance at a Super Bowl run.

And whatever the star running back did days later was the rarest of all touchdown hat-tricks: rushing, catching and even throwing a TD in the same game, becoming one of only three players from the Super Bowl era to have accomplished this unicorn feat.

You’re one of the most electric players in the NFL, consistently among fantasy football’s top picks. Bragging rights in the locker room?

It’s never discussed; I don’t know if I’ve ever had a conversation about fantasy football in an NFL locker room. I think the problem with fantasy is that particularly offensive players have mixed emotions about what it’s done for our game.

Obviously we love it because it brought so many new viewers into football, but at the same time part of what makes football so great is the team aspect, and some games – let’s say if you take a blitz that leads to someone throwing a touchdown, that’s a big play that might not go on the fantasy sheet but is rewarded in our game.

It’s a selfless game…. You don’t really have time either. There is much more to football than what people see on Sundays. [It’s] frowned upon enough to evoke fantasy football. At least in our locker room they don’t talk about it much.

You said the NFL was the greatest team sport in the world. Is it frustrating for someone who has broken records at every level to never have been part of a team with high expectations?

We always have high expectations. I think [some] people might not, but we don’t listen to what people think. Right in the world now, people want to define who you are, and if you listen to them, it’s your fault…. I think for us the best thing about football is that any Sunday you can win. There isn’t a team in the NFL that can’t beat another team. That’s what makes the sport so great: it’s about who performs on Sunday.

I don’t focus on anything other than my job. Every day I have so many things to do to be successful and that’s what I focus on. I don’t really have time in the day to focus on someone else’s expectations of me. I have very high expectations for myself. Our team [the Panthers] has very high expectations. It’s a very competitive league, and every game you play you think you can win. If you don’t, you shouldn’t be playing.

When you’re sitting there watching the Championship Games from home and texting the guys on the team, how disappointed are you that you haven’t reached that stage yet?

Oh no, nobody agrees to lose. If your question is, am I okay? This answer is no…. I think obviously every time you sit down and the playoffs roll around, it’s frustrating. It pisses you off, it should piss you off, but you can prove them right or wrong.

My whole thing has always been to put one foot in front of the other, keep working and good things will happen. But it’s a league where we’ve seen teams start the year 1-6 and people say, “You’re not a top team,” and they end up making the playoffs. I think that’s the reality of this league, not the bird talk of this league. I go into each match confident as always in my preparation, confident in my teammates. It’s just about executing.

You have a well-known robust recovery regimen – sauna, pulse machine, a very strong relationship with BodyArmor, etc. How important is recovery to you?

Yeah, you play NFL running back you’re gonna do your best to find the best way to recover as fast as possible, because you have no other choice. For me it’s…you’re always trying to figure out what’s the next best thing, and can that speed up my recovery process?

You mentioned BodyArmor, obviously one thing that has been consistent is the diet and what I put in my body. When it comes to sports drinks in particular, recovery isn’t just after, it’s during sports. You are already beginning this recovery process. You are already training your body to do specific things for long periods of time. That’s why I partnered with BodyArmor, it’s a really easy partnership because I used the product before I partnered with them. It’s a healthier sports drink, nothing artificial in it. All of these things are obviously very important when it comes to training. Sometimes you can get a fake high when you’re out in the field by putting certain things in your body, but that won’t have the best benefits for you in the long run.

We heard you driving an Aston Martin DB11. It is a distinguished choice.

I’m not a huge car fan, but I love this car. I love Bond movies [wherein 007 drives an Aston Martin]. All my cars are matte black on black, clean. The Aston is an experience when you drive it. It’s not super fancy inside, there aren’t a lot of gadgets, it feels like you’re flying an airplane. Its dashboard is very simple and sophisticated, but I love this car. It’s really fun to drive.

(Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage)

Last question: your girlfriend happens to be not only a Maxim cover girl, but also one of our biggest sellers in recent years. How’s life with Olivia?

Yeah, great, he’s a great guy. I wish people could sometimes see her through my eyes too. She works so hard. One of the hardest workers I have ever met in my life. You mean someone who wakes up every day and pursues greatness. It’s inspiring to be around her. But she’s fine, our family is fine, we’re fine.

Tags: athletes christian mccaffrey football magazine article news nfl olivia culpo san francisco 49ers sports


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