(2:15 pm: The Packers have just drafted B.J. Raji, and the 49ers are on the board)
We’re 5 minutes away from what could possibly be the second bit of fantastic news for the San Francisco 49ers — after the announced return of their classic uniforms, of course.
I’ll probably be proven wrong on this and the Niners will select some guy like Brian Orakpo or Everette Brown or even trade down, but Michael Crabtree’s on the phone. I was hoping for Michael Oher, but that was before Crabtree fell this far (thanks again to the Raiders, who took the best available 40-time and went with Darrius Heyward-Bey). Is Crabtree talking to Scot McCloughan? Is he talking to his agent? Is he talking to his girlfriend? We’ll see in a few seconds…
IT’S CRABTREE!!! IT’S CRABTREE!!! The 49ers just selected what many have called the best player in the draft, and I’m already getting celebratory text messages!!! Steve Young just said Crabtree better call up Jerry Rice and start working out with him, since even “at 45 he can still outwork most wide receivers.” Crabtree looks pretty giddy for a guy who was just drafted about five spots lower than he had figured, and I’m guessing the fact that he gets to play on the same team as Flash 80 has a lot to do with it.
I’m giddy, too. Usually the NFL Draft is a lot better in terms of anticipation than the actual experience of watching it, but today’s was awesome from the very beginning.
1. Matthew Stafford, Lions: I love the fact that Roger Goodell forced the Lions to announce the pick at the start of the show instead of waiting the full ten minutes even though everyone knows he was signed last night (or earlier).
2. Jason Smith, Rams: The guy isn’t that great on the nighttime ESPN Radio shift, so I doubt he’ll be able to block all that well.
3. Tyson Jackson, Chiefs: Sure, whatever.
4. Aaron Curry, Seahawks: Now we know why Seattle traded Julian Peterson. No big deal for the 49ers, since linebacker isn’t exactly their weakest position and Curry isn’t a pass rusher.
5. Mark Sanchez, Jets (trade from Browns): The 49ers can’t get Sanchez, which is the best news of the day. It’s official, the 49ers will get a player who can help them next season.
6. Andre Smith, Bengals: Perfect Bengals pick. “You mean there’s a guy available who had a mental breakdown at the combine and is sure to get significantly fatter every year for the rest of his life? Well, as long as Nick Saban vouches for him, we’re down. Not many things in life more trustworthy than the word of Nick Saban.” Since the Jail Blazers are dead, Bob Whitsitt has to be pulling the strings in Cincy.
7. Darrius Heyward-Bey, Raiders: You just can’t make this stuff up. Al goes for the fastest receiver, even though by all accounts he’s the third-best actual receiver available. I really need to invite Al to my fantasy football league.
8. Eugene Monroe, Jaguars: Nobody would be crying if Monroe fell to the 49ers, but now the Crabtree watch is on. No way the Packers pick a receiver, right? Please?
9. B.J. Raji, Packers: Yes! Yes! Yes! Man, I thought I was yelling into the wind with all my Michael Oher talk, and now the Packers have decided to get the next Gilbert Brown.
10. Michael Crabtree, 49ers: Let’s take a look at some Crabtree stats, shall we?
2007: 1,962 yards, 134 catches, 22 TD’s (to put this in perspective, Heyward-Bey had 2,089 yards and 13 TD’s…in his three-year career)
2008: 1,165 yards, 97 catches, 19 TD’s
Apparently the stress fracture in his foot slowed him down a little last season, although his game-winning TD catch against Texas was last year’s college football play of the year. Heyward-Bey might run faster in a straight line, but he looks to be simply a speedier Ronald Curry. Now the 49ers have a man who could become one of the top playmakers in the entire NFL, something they haven’t had since Terrell Owens was spreading rumors that Jeff Garcia is gay. New uniforms, new No. 1 receiver, and I couldn’t be happier. How about you?