Crabtree calls holdout ‘humbling experience’

Michael Crabtree arrived at the 49ers’ practice facility around 11 a.m., shook hands with his teammates and then went out of the practice field for the team’s morning walk-through. Coach Mike Singletary said Crabtree will not suit up for Sunday’s game against the Atlanta Falcons.



The 49ers are eligible for a two-week roster exemption, so they will not have to clear a spot on the 53-man roster until after the bye week.


A club source said Crabtree did not want to have a press conference to announce his signing, but the club insisted on it. Here are excerpts from his brief meeting with the media this morning.


Q: What changed in your approach to make you want to get a deal done now?

Crabtree: “I just let my agent handle all my business. The 49ers came to us and we came to them and everybody came to a reachable agreement and it happened.”


(Agent Eugene Parker did not attend the press conference. Most times an agent will be available for questions after a client signs such a high-profile contract.)


Q: Why was it worth it to hold out all that time?

Crabtree: “I’m just glad I’m past that part.”


Q: What did you gain from it?

Crabtree: “I’m very humble right now. It was a very humbling experience. And just getting a chance to sit back and better myself as a person, as a player, as a teammate.”


Q: So did holding out all those days make you humble?

Crabtree: “I’m not just saying it made me humble, but it’s a very humbling experience. And I felt like going through that made me look at the world a different way – look at my teammates a different way. Hopefully, it’ll work out for the best.”


Q: What’s it feel like to be a professional athlete and see your dream come true?

Crabtree:  “A weight has been lifted off my shoulders, and I can’t want to get in this locker room with my teammates, get out there with coach Mike Singletary and get out there and play on Sundays.”


Q: What do you hope to be able to contribute in the context of the entire season?

Crabtree: “Doing the best job I can do. Anything coach asks me to do, whether it’s block or running go-routes for no reason, I’m doing it all just to win. Anything I can to do help the team win, I’m here.”


Q: How closely did you watch the 49ers when you were away?

Crabtree: “I watched every game. This is the team that drafted me so I watched them very closely every Sunday. I’m looking forward to playing a big role in this offense.”


Q: Do you have concerns coming into this offense about how much you can produce?

Crabtree: “I’m not a numbers guy. I’m a football player. Whatever coach asks me to do, I’m out there doing it to the best of my ability.”


Q: Did you feel there was a point you weren’t going to sign?

Crabtree: “My whole approach during this situation was to get better every day. I never looked at what the media was saying or what anybody else was saying.”


Q: Your cousin was somebody who said that, can you confirm or deny that?

Crabtree: “I’m Michael Crabtree, and whatever I say is what I say.”


Q: Are you concerned that teammates might be resentful that you didn’t go through camp?

Crabtree: “Like I said, for the team to accept me, I can’t do nothing but play my part. I’m coming in to play football.


Singletary steps up and says, “Last question.”


Q: How do you feel about having to win over the fans who have been upset with you?

Crabtree: “Oh, man. I wouldn’t know if they’re upset with me or not. All I can do is come in here and be the best teammate I can be and try to do the best job I can do.”


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