Wide receiver suffers achilles tear as 49ers must once again add depth to receiver corps.
The San Francisco 49ers have been struck a huge injury blow as Michael Crabtree suffered an achilles tear in the team’s off-season workouts, and looks set to miss at least the first ten games of next season.
The 25-year old underwent surgery on Wednesday, and leaves the NFC Champions very thin at the wide receiver position.
With Crabtree out, newly acquired Anquan Boldin has become the projected starter, and behind him, it is a mixture of rookies and inexperienced pass catchers.
Mario Manningham is still recovering from his torn ACL, and is projected for a week six return. Behind him is Kyle Williams, who too is coming off a similar injury, and finally AJ Jenkins, who despite being a first round pick last year, has made no impression on the coaching staff thus far, and was expecting to fight for a roster spot this season.
The loss of Crabtree to the 49ers offence is massive, especially after Colin Kaepernick became the team’s starting Quarterback.
During that period, Crabtree was targeted 40% of the time by the second year QB, 27 times on third down and 13 times in the red zone. Replacing a target like that is not just something you can do by bringing in a decent replacement.
The relationship between these two was built on trust and dependability that both will be working on the same page. This bond must be set up again between Kaepernick and potentially Boldin again throughout this off-season, otherwise it could be a tough season pass-wise for the Super Bowl hopefuls.
While this injury does not rule them out of contention for the Vince Lombardi trophy, this setback will require a lot of work offensively if they want to continue with the explosive offence that got them to the big game last season.