The Oakland Raiders kick off their 2015 season on Sunday when they host the Cincinnati Bengals. That will mark the first game for a pair of ex-49ers, with Michael Crabtree and Aldon Smith suiting up in the silver and black. And now, Michael Crabtree is back in the news with some comments about the 49ers.
Crabtree sat down with San Francisco Chronicle Raiders writer Vic Tafur for a wide-ranging one-on-one interview. The most controversial part of the window involved some comments about the 49ers and quarterback Colin Kaepernick. According to Crabtree, the 49ers made him a contract offer that was more than his current deal with the Raiders. Crabtree said he needed a fresh start, and "wanted to come to a team that really wanted and needed me."
I'm not surprised by that part. Crabtree had a tumultuous run with the 49ers following his 2009 selection. It makes sense that he would want a fresh start and a chance to re-build his value. It was the comments about Kaepernick that will rub people the wrong way. Taffy said "Crabtree doesn't want to take shots at any of his former teammates but sometimes he can't help it." And shots indeed were sort of fired:
"I needed new scenery. It wasn't for me," Crabtree said. "I needed a quarterback that can deliver the ball, and that was hungry like I was."
I don't think Crabtree is a bad guy, but he has always struck me as a little bit socially awkward. And I don't think he's trying to trash Kaepernick, but I think he sometimes just says the wrong thing. Or maybe he really just has a problem with Kap, who knows. At the end of the day, it's words from a former 49er that really don't have a whole lot of value in the bigger picture. Kap has plenty to prove on his own, and Crabtree's comments are not something that will really matter moving forward.