Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Decision Time: WR Michael Crabtree, Texas Tech


Why Crabtree made the right decision to come out:

1. A "sure" bet:
Crabtree had the best hands in all of college football. In his two years as a starter at Texas Tech, he amassed an astounding 231 receptions for 3,127 yards and 41 touchdowns. That’s an average of over 115 receptions, 1,563 yards, and 20 touchdowns per season. Those scary stats alone tell you to go to the NFL while you have had minor injuries (mainly a sprained right ankle this year) and you are at the top of your game.

2. Nothing left to prove:
Crabtree has already won numerous awards. These include: unanimous 2007 and 2008 First-Team All-America honors; 2007 and 2008 Biletnikoff Award winner, which is given to the nation’s best wide receiver (in 2007 he was the first freshman and Big 12 player to win the award); and he also won the Paul Warfield Trophy. On top of that, he set Big 12 and NCAA freshman records by leading the nation with 134 catches for 1,962 yards and 22 touchdowns in 2007. The only possible thing left to do in college for Crabtree would be to win a national championship. That would not be likely if he chose to stay for two key reasons: Graham Harrell will no longer be there, instead he will be playing on Sundays; and teams like Florida, USC, and Texas will likely be the front runners yet again next year (especially with the announced return of Tim Tebow at Florida).

3. Bigger is better: Not only will Crabtree's spectacular set of hands be admired by many NFL teams, his size will as well. Listed as 6'3" and 214 lbs. Crabtree has the size all quarterbacks in the league covet. Many of the elite wideouts in the NFL stand taller than 6'2", including Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Johnson, and Calvin Johnson to name a few. Although he will not do his physical testing at the Combine, he will do it during his pro day in Dallas. He has great speed for a wideout his size which makes him even more appealing to NFL scouts. Even if his 40 time is not "astonishing", his size, route running ability, and hands will no doubt make him the first receiver taken in the 2009 draft.

Franek's Take: Even though Crabtree is just a red-shirt sophomore his decision to depart was a no-brainer. No one was more of slam dunk to leave early for the NFL.

Photo Credit: Texas Tech Athletics/Norvelle Kennedy