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49ers free agents 2015: Some of the skills that make Michael Crabtree an important extension consideration

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The San Francisco 49ers biggest free agent heading into next year's offseason is wide receiver Michael Crabtree. We take a look at some highlights of his that prove why he deserves a contract extension.

Over the weekend, a FanPost went up talking about why Michael Crabtree is overpaid, and why the 49ers will not re-sign him. Thus far, we have not really seen any specific rumors about contract figures. Rather, we've heard speculation that this deal or that deal might be what he will look for in a new deal. It is possible this is leaked information, but usually we hear something a bit more specific as to the source when it is leaked.

Whatever the case, the timing of this is good, as the SB Nation Studio wrapped up the editing process on a Michael Crabtree video I put together two weeks ago. I went up to our studio in New York and shot three videos. The first was a quick reaction to Aldon Smith's sentencing. The second was a look at training camp position battles to watch. This third one is some thoughts on wide receiver Michael Crabtree.

There has been plenty of discussion about whether or not Crabtree is worth X amount of money. There's been plenty of chatter about how he will want too much, or how he wants to go play for the Cowboys, or any other assorted speculation.

Rather than focus on all that noise, I wanted to just look at some of the reasons it makes sense to extend Crabtree. I realize the salary cap is an important factor in this, but I also think it is important to note the things he does exceedingly well. I focused in on his hands, vision, balance, run after the catch, and blocking. I found some highlights to help show these off, and it gave me a chance to look at both my favorite Crabtree plays, and some under-the-radar plays that are easy to overlook.

I am somewhat optimistic the 49ers can work out a deal with Crabtree, but I'm far from certain about that. Michael Crabtree was name was referenced in Colin Kaepernick's contract negotiations as a reason for Kap taking a lower signing bonus. It means less money hitting the 49ers cap in 2014, which opens the door for more upfront money for another contract extension.

Now, that does not mean we are guaranteed to see Crabtree sign an extension. I would think Kap and Crabtree have at least had some discussion about their respective contracts, but anything can happen in negotiations. Maybe Crabtree re-signs, maybe he doesn't. I think he's shown us more than enough to prove himself worthy of an extension. I would not completely back up the Brink's truck, and that is of course the rub. But it is worth it for the 49ers to try and find some common ground in negotiations.