San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree wasn’t quite a full participant in this afternoon’s practice, but he took several reps in 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills, and caught a few passes. Unless one knew about his previous injury (a right calf strain), it would’ve been hard to notice that something was ever wrong.
After practice, Crabtree talked to the media for the first time in a while. It’s pretty noteworthy around here (and by “here” I mean Santa Clara) because apparently Crabtree doesn’t make himself available all that often. Here’s a video from Crabtree’s impromptu press conference, with the transcript underneath.
What’s it been like to be alongside Randy?
Great. You could learn a lot of stuff. Little techniques. Really learn football, talk football. He’s a legend, man. Can’t do anything but learn.
Anything that can help you, when you guys are on the field together?
Everybody helps each other. It’s just not about Moss. We got Vernon, we’ve got Delanie, Teddy coming in strong. Teddy’s having a good camp, Manningham. Just everybody together. We’re all going to help each other out. We’re just trying to get this thing rolling, passing offense, whatever coach got for us. We were talking to Moss about blocking today too.
Do you think this offense can be a lot better than it was a year ago? The passing offense?
Every year I think we could be better. Every year is a year to get better, you know? So of course I’m thinking like that this year. Really, just get in that end zone. That’s the key.
Is the next step for you tomorrow to go through a full practice?
Whatever the trainer’s got for me. I mean, can go. I think I put in a lot of reps today. I feel like I did. The only thing I didn’t do is two minute (drill). But I’m out here. I’m good, feeling good enough to run, ain’t got no pain, nothing like that. I’m here, man.
Just to be clear, how exactly did this all flare up?
Just a lock in the calf muscle. I don’t know too much about injuries, bro. You’d think I’d know, it’s always something different in football. I’m sure everybody goes through something. It was just my calf, and I had to stay off of it. Didn’t want anything serious to happen to it. The training staff and the coaches did that for me. When they tell me I can go, I’m going.
Are you impressed with what you saw with A.J. today?
Every day you get better, that’s all I tell A.J. Every day is the chance to get better. A.J.’s looking good. All the rookies look good. No. 9 (Brian Tyms), 89 (Nathan Palmer), out there working.
Mike, you seem frustrated with the questions about the injury…
Frustrated? I’m just talking. I don’t like how you use them words, “frustrated.” Ain’t nobody frustrated, it’s football.
Does it get old talking about injuries?
It’s part of football. You see somebody injured every day. That’s news. That’s part of football, it’s a physical game. I just know how to deal with it. I’ve been here. I know how to deal with it. I’m sure you guys know, when they say “hut” I’m going full speed. 100%, I’m going. I’m not worried about that. I’m really just worried about what we’re going to do in these games and practice, trying to get better every day. That’s all I can do.
Crabtree made several references to getting better every day, or every day presenting a chance to get better. That’s one of Jim Harbaugh’s main tenets (straight from Bo Schembechler): Every day, you either get better or you get worse. You never stay the same. The players see that on a sign when they head out of the locker room to the practice field.
Here’s another picture of Crabtree warming up before heading off to do some individual drills.