Following the franchise’s first playoff berth in well over a decade, the Oakland Raiders took a significant step back this past season that saw them fall well short of that mark. This has led the front office to dive into a full assessment of the state of their roster this offseason.
As a result, there has been some growing chatter about Oakland seriously considering to part ways with veteran wide receiver Michael Crabtree. However, Vic Tafur of the Athletic is now reporting that the Raiders intend on keeping the 30-year-old under contract for at least through the 2018 campaign.
Receiver Michael Crabtree is coming back to Oakland for the 2018 NFL season, league sources told The Athletic.
He is on track to enter the third year of his four-year, $34 million contract that will pay him roughly $7.6 million. He is also scheduled to earn $8.2 million in 2019. Crabtree will also be the second-highest-paid offensive skilled position player on the roster behind only Pro Bowl quarterback Derek Carr, who is slated $25 million next season.
Crabtree is coming off a discouraging season where experienced a noticeable drop in production after recording a team-high 58 receptions for 618 receiving yards and a team-best eight touchdowns in 14 games played. He had nine games with at least 60 receiving yards and ultimately wound up snapping his 121-game streak with at least one reception.
The decision to keep Crabtree aboard is a clear signal that the Raiders’ plan on involving him as a major part of the offensive game plan under new head coach Jon Gruden. Keep in mind, he is just a year removed from his most productive campaign where he notched a career-best 89 catches for 1,005 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. It also marked just his second 1,000-receiving yard campaign and third with at least 85 receptions.