On Monday, the Baltimore Ravens let Michael Crabtree know that he has been released from the organization, according to Adam Schefter. Crabtree joined the Ravens for the 2018 season in hopes of leading a revamped wide receiver unit into the playoffs. By all accounts, Crabtree became a serviceable wideout for the AFC North division winner.
Crabtree caught 54 passes for 607 yards and 3 touchdowns during his first and only season with the Ravens. He was second on the team in receptions and third on the team in receiving yards. Yet, the Ravens are attempting to get more explosive in the passing game with quarterback Lamar Jackson going into his second season.
Crabtree started all 16 games for the Ravens. However, his targets decreased mightily after the seventh game of the season. The Ravens targeted Crabtree slightly more than nine times per game during the first two months of the season. Unfortunately for Crabtree and the Ravens, the team wasn’t winning with Joe Flacco in the starting lineup. Once Flacco was put on the shelf due to a hip injury, the offense shifted into a run-focused attacked. Therefore, Crabtree was not featured in the game plan nearly as much.
In the final seven weeks of the season, Crabtree averaged roughly 3.4 targets per game. He caught a touchdown pass during Jackson’s second start against the Oakland Raiders. Interestingly enough, Crabtree came from the Raiders after three seasons with the organization. Overall, Crabtree has spent 10 NFL seasons with three teams. The 49ers selected him the No. 10 spot of the 2009 NFL draft.
Now, Crabtree is in search of another home where he will have an opportunity to win a coveted Super Bowl. He still has the ability to perform as a possession receiver. According to Spotrac, Crabtree’s release will clear 4.6 million of the salary cap.
The Ravens finished with a (10-6) record. Their wild card playoff loss to the Los Angeles Chargers ended a terrific second half of the season. It will be interesting to see if they are able to find a speedster on the perimeter for more dynamic plays in the passing game.