As a San Francisco 49er fan, I was ecstatic when we were able to get Michael Crabtree with the tenth pick in this years draft. The exciting receiver from Texas Tech was going to instantly upgrade the wide receiver position, which hasn’t had a playmaker since Terrell Owens left with his popcorn. My joy has since faded, as Crabtree remains the loan unsigned draft pick.
Young Mr. Crabtree believes he should be the highest paid receiver in the draft, even though the Oakland Raiders made Darius Heyward Bey the first receiver selected, when they choose him three spots earlier. Bey, the7th pick pick, signed a contract for 5 years, $38.25 million ($23.5M guaranteed.) The 49ers offer to Crabtree is said to be in the neighborhood of 5 yrs, $20 M base, $26.5 M max, $16 M guaranteed. As the tenth pick, Crabtree shouldn’t expect to receive a contract equal to the seventh pick, but that’s what he wants.
I get it, Michael. You think you’re undervalued and fear you’ll be underpaid, even though you’re coming off an injury, and haven’t taken part in any team activities. The thing is, you can’t change where you were drafted. If you foolishly decide to sit out this year and reenter the draft next year, you won’t improve your draft position or contract. You weren’t a top five pick this year, and won’t be a top five pick next year, and in all likelihood, won’t be a top 10 pick either. Teams won’t rush to sign a player a year removed from competitive football, with one failed contract negotiation already on his short professional resume. As player who didn’t participate in the combine his rookie year, and will be ineligible to participate in the combine next year, there won’t be current information for teams to judge you on. No one’s going to risk a high pick on a player without being able to evaluate him. Interestingly, the 49ers have two draft picks in the first round of next years draft and you can cross them off as a possible suitors for Crabtree next year.
The San Francisco 49ers can play this season without Michael Crabtree, he can’t play without them. As a 49er fan, I applaud San Francisco’s stance on the young man. If his desire to play football doesn’t outweigh his ego and greed, then I don’t want him in a San Fran uniform. It’s unfortunate Crabtree didn’t respond like other players who were chosen later in the draft then they expected, and used it as motivation. At some point Crabtree must grow up and deal with the fact that life doesn’t always go your way. He should stop pouting, sign the deal, become a millionaire, and go to work. If he works hard there’ll be more contracts, but he can’t make money, or plays, if he’s not on the field.