JUST IN: San Francisco 49ers Running Back Christian McCaffrey wants to leave current club for former team.

The 49ers traded for Christian McCaffrey with the intention of sending him to Los Angeles.

Sunday’s Super Bowl LVIII will feature Christian McCaffrey of the San Francisco 49ers, in part because the team did not want the outstanding running back to play for the Los Angeles Rams.

San Francisco 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey (23) warms up during a practice ahead of the Super Bowl.

Chief executive officer of the 49ers Jed York told reporters this week in the Bay Area that the team had to move on even though getting McCaffrey from the Carolina Panthers in a 2022 deal was expensive.

The 49ers forfeited a fifth-round selection this year as well as second, third, and fourth-round draft selections in the 2023 draft. It seems that York and general manager John Lynch had to persuade coach Kyle Shanahan that, despite McCaffrey’s lack of skill as a quarterback or pass rusher, the expense was justified.

“And everyone said, ‘Do you want him to move to Los Angeles?'” according to York. Here we are, folks.

The Rams were 3-3 at the time and had just won the Super Bowl.

Has McCaffrey considered joining the Rams as a player?

“This week, as I got ready to play the Kansas City Chiefs at Allegiant Stadium on Sunday, I was trying to be just completely blank in my head because I didn’t want to have [to] predict, ‘This is where I’m going or this is where I’m getting traded,'” McCaffrey stated.

“That week was really busy. Even so, I was still cheering for the Panthers while I heard these trade rumors. And that’s kind of an odd state of mind to be in.

But did he picture himself lining up beside Matthew Stafford of the Rams in a Sean McVay offense?

“I had no visions,” McCaffrey remarked. “I’m telling you, I was just acting stupidly, thinking that I would answer the phone anytime it rang. And I’m heading to San Francisco, my agent informed me over the phone.

“I said, ‘Okay, let’s move on.'” I took off on a plane on Friday morning, touched down, had my physical, practiced with the San Francisco 49ers on Friday, and, oddly, played on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs.

In that 44-23 loss, McCaffrey ran for 38 yards on eight carries and caught two receptions.

But he played to his full potential the following week against the Rams.

In a 31-14 thrashing at SoFi Stadium, McCaffrey ran for 94 yards and a touchdown, grabbed eight catches for 55 yards and a touchdown, and threw a 34-yard touchdown pass.

The defeat condemned the reigning Super Bowl champion Rams to a 5-12 season.

In addition to scoring 21 touchdowns and accumulating 2,023 scrimmage yards this season, McCaffrey was named offensive player of the year, an All-Pro, and a finalist for most valuable player. In two postseason victories, he has four touchdowns to his credit.

“His skill set is evident to all,” said Steve Spagunolo, the defensive coordinator for the Chiefs. “He is quick and agile.” He seems like an extremely powerful and aggressive runner to me. I’ve included several examples where he is genuinely surrounded by one, two, or even three defenders and still manages to continue. He has the capacity to outmaneuver and outviolate you.

For the Rams, it has worked out fairly well even without McCaffrey.

Kyren Williams, a second-year running back, was selected to the Pro Bowl this season after amassing 1,144 yards of rushes and 15 touchdowns for a squad that surprised everyone by winning 10 games and making it to the playoffs.

According to overthecap.com, Williams, 23, will have a salary-cap figure of $1.1 million for the upcoming season. His rookie deal is good for another two years.

The website states that McCaffrey, 27, will have a cap number of $14.1 million in 2024 and $14.3 million in 2025.

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