San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree is once again out with an injury during training camp. Crabtree entering his fourth season, Crabtree has yet to play in a preseason game in the NFL.
Crabtree held out his rookie season and missed all of training camp and four regular season games in a contract dispute. The last two years various injuries have kept him out of practice and preseason games. The last two seasons, Crabs suddenly came alive when the regular season rolled around and was able to become a starter right away due mostly to a weak WR group.
Finally reporting to camp injury free, this time Crabtree injured his foot in the very first practice, failing to finish out the day on time and is still out of the lineup. He is one of five WRs head coach Jim Harbaugh called #1 type WRs and is slated to start alongside Randy Moss who is in his first season with the team.
The team also brought in former New York Giants WR Mario Manningham and drafted Illinois WR AJ Jenkins in the first round of the draft. Harbaugh also hailed NFC Championship game dud Kyle Williams for his efforts thus far in the off season program. The 49ers have brought in a lot of playmakers and Crabtree will have to earn his snaps in 2012. His disappearing act during training camp is getting old to fans and has to be a disappointment to the organization.
Crabtree has often struggled to get in synch in the passing game early in the season as he gets in game shape and tries to make up ground and establish lost repor with the QB. Drafted #10 overall, Crabtree has yet to play like the monster he was at Texas Tech. He’s entering a big season in his career, the first in which his position as the most talented receiver on the team will be challenged.
He is under contract for the next two seasons and the 49ers are heavily invested in his success. They will give him every opportunity to play and become a top target in an offense that suddenly looks explosive. The moves they have made this offseason show caution in their belief in Crabtree, they would love for him to finally break out and become the #1 WR they drafted, at the same time, the organization is prepared when he isn’t.
Do you think Michael Crabtree will play in a pre season game this season? Will he ever be the #1 WR the 49ers drafted him to be?