Michael Crabtree will be the new No. 1 receiver for the Ravens this season after he signed in Baltimore following his release from Oakland. The Ravens have revamped their receiving corps this year with Crabtree, Willie Snead and John Brown replacing Mike Wallace and Jeremy Maclin, and Crabtree should soak up targets from Joe Flacco. Crabtree had a down season in 2017 from his previous two years, but he still led the Raiders with eight receiving touchdowns. In 2015-16, Crabtree averaged 87 catches, 962.5 yards and 8.5 touchdowns, and he can easily get back to that level, even with the run-first Ravens. Crabtree is worth drafting as a low-end No. 2 Fantasy receiver in Round 6 or 7 in the majority of leagues, and he has the chance to finish as a top-20 receiver in all formats this year.
Crabtree isn't in uniform for Thursday's Hall of Fame Game versus the Bears, freelance NFL writer Jeff Zrebiec reports. In the wake of the Ravens' offseason overhaul at wide receiver, Crabtree is the consensus pick to serve as Joe Flacco's No. 1 option in 2018. That said, Crabtree, along with John Brown and Willie Snead, won't see the field Thursday.
Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco suggested that Crabtree has stood out most among the team's new wide receivers during OTAs, Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com reports. "[Crabtree's] the guy," said Flacco. "Because he's got a little different way that he runs the routes. He's really crafty with it, and he knows when to break away from guys and how to get open" Baltimore swapped out Mike Wallace, Jeremy Maclin and Michael Campanaro for Crabtree, John Brown and Willie Snead -- with Crabtree's three-year, $21 million contract easily ranking first among the bunch. While a clear favorite to lead his new team in targets and red-zone opportunities, the 30-year-old wideout may struggle for efficiency in an offense that produced a league-worst 5.7 yards per pass attempt last season. However, he at least seems to be earning Flacco's trust rather quickly, after doing the same with Derek Carr in Oakland the past three years.
Crabtree has signed a three-year, $21 million deal with the Ravens, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports. After voiding the deal they had with fellow receiver Ryan Grant, the Ravens moved quickly to scoop up Crabtree, who the Raiders cut to make way for Jordy Nelson. Crabtree isn't particularly fast by NFL standards, but he did manage to log 25 TDs during his three-year stint with the Raiders. Though his reception total dipped to 58 in 14 contests in 2017, the 30-year-old -- who combined for 174 catches in 2015 and 2016 -- should benefit from the fact that he now profiles as QB Joe Flacco's top option at wideout, a team context that should generate a decent share of volume and red-zone opportunities for Crabtree this coming season.
Crabtree is visiting the Ravens on Friday, ESPN.com's Jamison Hensley reports. Crabtree would replace Ryan Grant, whose four-year, $29 million contract was nullified after he failed a physical with the Ravens. The team is badly in need of a wide receiver, as injury-prone John Brown is the only player signed thus far to replace Mike Wallace and Jeremy Maclin. The 30-year-old Crabtree caught 58 of 101 targets for only 618 yards last season, but he nonetheless managed to hit paydirt eight times in 14 games, bringing his three-year total in Oakland to 25 touchdowns in 46 appearances. The Raiders released him earlier this week once it became clear they were going to sign Jordy Nelson as a replacement for the No. 2 receiver role. Crabtree likely would be the No. 1 option in the passing game if he were to sign with the Ravens.
The Raiders will release Crabtree, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports. With Crabtree on the way out, the Raiders will parlay the resulting cap savings into a deal that will bring former Packers wideout Jordy Nelson to Oakland. While not a burner, Crabtree was productive enough during his three-year stint with the Raiders, logging 25 TDs in that span. His catch total dipped to 58 in 14 games this past season, but in the right situation in terms of volume, Crabtree -- who combined for 174 catches in 2015 and 2016 -- could re-emerge as a PPR factor in 2018.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|7||10/21||New Orleans Saints||20||20.00|
|14||12/09||@Kansas City Chiefs||30||23.35|
|15||12/16||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||31||23.75|
|16||12/23||@Los Angeles Chargers||7||17.00|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||131||77||848||8||45||11.01||134|