After the San Francisco 49ers Monday Night Football win, head coach Jim Harbaugh met with the media and had a chance to discuss Michael Crabtree's impending return. I recommend checking out the video at the 3-minute mark so you can judge his comments for yourself.
Harbaugh was talking about the players starting to chip in, and in mentioning guys like Tony Jerod-Eddie, Demarcus Dobbs and LaMichael James, he also said "Crabtree coming back next week." That was of course followed up by questions about Crabtree's status. Harbaugh said he anticipated having Crabtree back this week. That was followed by a question as to whether Crabtree would play against the Rams. Harbaugh responded with a little chuckle and said, "I anticipate that he's going to come back this week."
That was tweeted out by some in attendance as Crabtree will be back for the Rama game. The 49ers have to activate Crabtree today, but that does not guarantee anything against the Rams, other than being on the 53-man roster. I would hope Crabtree is ready to play, but I don't take Jim Harbaugh's comments as guaranteeing anything other than he will be activated today.
Given this parsing of Coach Harbaugh's words, it's hard to know what to expect from Crabtree this Sunday. The media does not get to see Crabtree doing his full work during the team portion of practice. They see the individual work and then are shuttled off the field, so it's hard to know exactly where Crabtree stands. I'm sure we'll hear plenty of information from team and league sources this week as to Crabtree's Sunday status, but unless Jim Harbaugh or Michael Crabtree (or Greg Roman) says something very specific about Sunday, I'm taking it with a grain of salt until inactives are announced on Sunday.