A Michael Crabtree contract was a priority for the Oakland Raiders this season, and the two sides have now agreed to a new deal, according to the NFL.
Back when Michael Crabtree sat down with the San Francisco 49ers front office to discuss a new contract, he did not like what he heard. Management was not willing to offer a lucrative contract to their star wide receiver. Crabtree regressed after having his breakout season in 2012, where the Dallas native finally broke 1,000 yards receiving to go along with his 85 catches and nine touchdowns. Michael was injured in 2013. He was healthy in 2014 but fell short of expectations.
Michael Crabtree and his agent decided to venture out into free agency to see if another NFL team would consider paying big bucks for the former Texas Tech University star. Apparently, other general managers kept up with his performance with the San Francisco 49ers as well. No one was willing to bite on a long term deal for the now 28 year old wide receiver. The backup plan for Crabtree was to sign a one year contract with another team in hopes of putting up big numbers. That way, Michael could be able to choose his permanent destination.
Though they might not have been the first choice for either side, the Oakland Raiders ended up being the place where Michael Crabtree would sign his deal. He and his agent felt that Derek Carr had improved enough as an NFL quarterback. The Raiders knew that they needed to surround their young quarterback with good wide receivers. Crabtree was a veteran that could help. Management also picked up Amari Cooper with the fourth overall selection in the 2015 NFL Draft. Michael knew that would help him because defenses wouldn’t put as much attention into him if they were worried about Cooper.
Things turned out a lot better than expected for Michael Crabtree and the Oakland Raiders. Through the first 12 games, he has almost caught as many passes as he did with the San Francisco 49ers last season. Crabtree already has more receiving yards and touchdowns. Michael’s performance has been one of the biggest reasons why the Oakland Raiders are ranked 12th in the NFL on total offense as opposed to being dead last in 2014. Their passing game ranks ahead of the Denver Broncos, Indianapolis Colts, Green Bay Packers and Philadelphia Eagles, all of whom are supposed to have high profile offenses.
Officially, Michael Crabtree has signed a new four-year contract extension with the Oakland Raiders. It is worth $35 million, with $19 million of that being guaranteed. That averages out to be approximately $8.75 million a season, which is a considerable raise from the $3 million that Crabtree is making this season. Michael also has the stability of knowing that he doesn’t need to test free agency again anytime soon. The Raiders want him around, and Crabtree sounds happy to be around. The tenth overall selection in the 2009 NFL Draft immediately took to social media to declare that he has found an NFL home in Oakland.
Now, that the contract has been signed and sealed, Michael Crabtree and the Oakland Raiders can now focus on more important things such as a spot in the NFL Playoffs. They are currently sitting on a 5-7 record, which puts them in the tenth seed right now. The Raiders are only two games behind the 7-5 Kansas City Chiefs, who are currently and quietly on a six game winning streak after losing five in a row. It won’t be easy for Oakland, as they are heading to Sports Authority Field at Mile High to take on the 10-2 Denver Broncos.
Do you think that the Oakland Raiders made the right move in locking up Michael Crabtree for $35 million?
[Featured Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images]