Stewart carried 15 times for 40 yards in Sunday's 9-3 win over the Bills. For the second time in as many games to open the 2017 campaign, Stewart proved that rumors of the demise of his lead-back role within the Panthers offense were greatly exaggerated. The veteran back gutted out a tough effort against a feisty Bills front, averaging only 2.7 yards per attempt but still outperforming heralded rookie Christian McCaffrey (eight rushes, 10 yards) on the ground. While Stewart's totals over the first two games are nothing to write home about (33 carries for 105 yards and two receptions for 17 yards), they do serve to alleviate concerns about him possibly being phased out in favor of McCaffrey, at least for the foreseeable future. He'll look to up his production against the beatable Saints in Week 3.
Stewart rushed 18 times for 65 yards and caught both of his targets for 17 yards and a touchdown during Sunday's 23-3 victory over the 49ers. Stewart was more efficient on the ground than teammate Christian McCaffrey, who took his 13 carries for 47 yards (3.6 YPC). However, the latter was, unsurprisingly, much more involved in the passing game as McCaffrey saw a team-high seven targets compared to Stewart's two. Not to mention, that was just Stewart's seventh career touchdown in the passing game, so don't expect another of those anytime soon.
Stewart gained 39 yards on five carries in Thursday's preseason game against Jacksonville. The veteran got the starting nod and took a toss for 31 yards on the game's first snap, but Christian McCaffrey still ended up with more touches (five) than Stewart (four) on the opening drive. The Panthers intend to keep both backs heavily involved, with Stewart likely getting the goal-line carries while McCaffrey handles most of the receiving workload. Only time will tell how the rest of the rushing workload is divided.
Stewart rushed four times for eight yards and wasn't targeted in the passing game during Saturday's loss to the Titans in Week 2 of the preseason. Stewart got the first four carries for his team, but eighth overall pick Christian McCaffrey proved much more effective, with 72 yards and a touchdown on his five touches. While the two running backs have been operating in a timeshare thus far, Stewart will need to step it up if he doesn't want his role to shrink in a hurry.
Stewart totaled four yards on two carries in Wednesday's preseason opener versus the Texans. Stewart only played a couple of series before handing the reins over to rookie Christian McCaffrey. Although McCaffrey is expected to play a large part in Carolina's offense this term, Stewart is rightfully the team's No. 1 running back, explaining why he was hardly involved to start the exhibition slate.
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|3||09/24||New Orleans Saints||29||26.00|
|4||10/01||@New England Patriots||32||32.00|
|8||10/29||@Tampa Bay Buccaneers||1||7.00|
|12||11/26||@New York Jets||31||28.00|
|13||12/03||@New Orleans Saints||29||26.00|
|15||12/17||Green Bay Packers||20||18.00|
|16||12/24||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||1||7.00|
|3 Year Avg||212||874||6||16||113||1||140|