Michael Crabtree has made the turn now playing on the back nine of his career, but he could still serve as a valuable red-zone threat for the Detroit Lions.
The Baltimore Ravens released Michael Crabtree in February as he was set to make seven-million dollars in 2019. They decided to cut the veteran wide-out before his two-million-dollar roster guarantee bonus would have kicked in this past March.
The Ravens are transitioning into a young more explosive team, in turn, deciding Crabtree could be expendable. The Ravens are a run-heavy team with the inaccurate scrambling Lamar Jackson under center. They brought in Mark Ingram from the Saints to be the feature back.
Michael Crabtree was initially drafted 10th overall in 2009 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. Crabtree only spent one season in Baltimore catching 54 balls for only 607 yards including 3 scores. He’s only gone over 1000-yards twice in his career once with the 49ers back in 2012, and once with the Oakland Raiders in 2016.
Crabtree turns 32-years-old in September, he can’t be expected to be a top receiver at this stage of his career, but he could be a reliable red-zone target and complimentary weapon who wouldn’t break the bank for the Detroit Lions.
The 6’1, 215-pound target prefers to work as an outside receiver, which also could bring some creativity to the Lions offense. Danny Amendola will work out of the slot in three/four-receiver sets, but Marvin Jones who’s mostly worked outside could work out of the slot as he did in Cincinnati while Crabtree is on the field.
Michael isn’t going to break away from the defense at this stage of his career, but he is sure-handed. He would definitely be an upgrade to both Tommy Lee Lewis, Brandon Powell & rookie Travis Fulgham. The one downside that should be noted, the three mentioned all would play a part on Special Teams with the Lions, Crabtree will not.
In ten NFL seasons, Crabtree has registered 633 catches for 7477 yards and 54 touchdowns. He catches nearly 60% of his targets.