The Oakland Raiders went out and signed veteran wide receiver Michael Crabtree in hopes that he would give their young quarterback Derek Carr another weapon while also bringing experience into the locker room.
And he’s lived up to the one-year, $3.2 million contract thus far.
“Michael has been a real pro,” head coach Jack Del Rio said after Sunday’s 34-20 win over the New York Jets. “We love having him. He’s come in from day one and really fit in our locker room. He’s been a great teammate. He’s done everything we ask. He works his tail off. He’s been a great example for Coop [Amari Cooper]. He’s been a mentor in some respects that way. And he’s making the plays.
But that’s not all he brings to the team.
“He’s doing more than just being a mentor, he’s a play maker. He’s having a nice year for us,” Del Rio said.
With All-Pro corner Darrelle Revis shadowing rookie wide receiver Amari Cooper, Crabtree had another opportunity to shine on Sunday. The former San Francisco 49er took advantage by racking up seven receptions for 102 yards and one touchdown.
Carr has been enjoying having Crabtree on the team, who plays with an added edge on the field.
“I told him he played with daddy strength,” Carr said of his receiver. “When you’re a father, there’s an extra strength that you have and I said that’s what he played with today.”
Crabtree now has 40 receptions for 483 yards and three touchdowns, which is more than any other current 49er across the Bay.
He’s certainly playing well enough to warrant a contract extension with the Raiders, but for now Crabtree just wants to focus on the next game.
“You guys are moving too fast,” Crabtree said when asked about contract talks. “I’m just focusing on one game at a time.”
But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to stay here.
“I’m having fun,” he said about his time in Oakland. “I love this team and I love the fans.”