The wound is still fresh for Christian McCaffrey.
The Pro Bowl running back wishes he was knee-deep in Super Bowl preparations this week, but the 49ers were bounced by the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC Championship. During an interview with NFL Network’s Andrew Siciliano on Wednesday, McCaffrey said he doesn’t want to pick a winner between the Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs.
“I hope both teams lose,” McCaffrey said. “To me, it doesn’t matter. Obviously, we wish we were playing so bad. That game still hurts and it will for a while. But I think Nick Bosa said it best, I dunno if I’m gonna watch the game. It might hurt too much.”
McCaffrey did his part in the NFC title game, rushing 15 times for 84 yards and the Niners’ lone touchdown, while also catching four passes for 22 yards. It’s the deepest he ever got into the playoffs during his career, as it was just his second trip to the postseason overall.
McCaffrey is signed for the next three seasons at $12 million a year, though none of the money is guaranteed. He figures to be a central piece of the offense in the near future, no matter who the quarterback is. For now, he’s still feeling the pain of the loss in Philly.
“I think it’ll start to go away once next season starts,” McCaffrey said. “We’ll have a lot of fuel this offseason.”
The 49ers still feel like they didn’t get a fair shot at the Eagles, as quarterback Brock Purdy’s elbow was injured on the sixth play of the game and Josh Johnson suffered a concussion early in the third quarter.
Though he was prepared to enter the game as an emergency quarterback, McCaffrey said he didn’t lobby to go under center.
“I was setting up the earpiece in the helmet so I was ready to go if I needed to be,” McCaffrey said. “I learned all of the running back stuff and some of the receiver stuff, but definitely hadn’t mastered the quarterback position in that offense yet. I was willing to do whatever they asked me to do, definitely wasn’t lobbying for anything though. ...”
“It’s tough to win in the NFL without a quarterback. Especially in the NFC Championship with a defense like that. At that point it was something, I don’t know if we have 100 percent, you don’t practice a whole lot of veer in practice, you don’t practice a lot of emergency quarterback. Not to say you don’t practice it, but it’s just something that’s not ideal, especially with a whole half of football left. We were just trying to do whatever we could at the time.”