Ravens wide receiver Michael Crabtree is entering his 10th NFL season coming into this year’s training camp. He’s also beginning a new chapter in his career, joining Baltimore after playing three seasons with the Oakland Raiders.
On Wednesday, Willie Snead IV mentioned that he worked out with quarterback Joe Flacco during the offseason. Other receivers joined him, including Crabtree. The group of receivers linked up together at Northwest Regional Park, a park located just right across the street from the Under Armour Performance Center in Owings Mills, MD.
“Just running routes, catching the ball,” Crabtree said of working out with other receivers and his quarterback.
Flacco made the call to start the training sessions with his receivers, not the newly-signed Crabtree.
“No, that’s all [Flacco], man,” said Crabtree. “That’s the leader the leader. We’re just the wideouts. [We] do whatever he says. If we’ve got something to bring to the table, then we make it work.”
New beginnings are always an important time and the 30-year old wideout is raring to go.
“Excited,” Crabtree said of getting training camp started with a new team. “I couldn’t sleep last night. I don’t know why. [Wasn’t like we’re going to] have a football game or something, but it was a new team, new teammates and first day at war. Training camp, it doesn’t get better.”
Crabtree, Snead IV and John Brown are all part of a new group of receivers for Flacco. The team also drafted Jaleel Scott and Jordan Lasley in the fourth and fifth rounds respectively. Returning to the fray are Breshad Perriman and Chris Moore, who will most likely be fighting for a roster spot. With new receivers, Flacco will have to make adjustments.
“We’re all adjusting, right,” Crabtree asked. “We’re all new, just trying to find time to gel. And that’s what we’ve been doing, is putting in the overtime, putting in that work and making things come together.”
With a different group of pass-catchers, the Ravens have diversified their attack on offense. Each player brings a different skill set to the table and now Flacco is able to work with them all in camp. It will be an ongoing process, according to Crabtree.
“It’s day by day,” Crabtree said of the process. “It’s at our pace. I can only control what’s in front of me, and that’s when we’re doing routes. And I feel like we’re getting better every day.”
Flacco finished with a 64.1% completion percentage, 3,141 passing yards, 18 touchdowns, 13 interceptions and a passer rating of 80.4. He now has Lamar Jackson as his heir apparent and will have fire under him. Jackson continually improved in college and has caught the attention of veterans.
“Lamar Jackson,” Crabtree jokingly questioned. “Are you the same person that asked me the same question last time? [Crabtree laughed] Lamar’s a baller, man. He plays ball. He’s out there working, trying to learn the offense, learn the coverages, the reads, and I feel like he’s getting there.”