On Feb. 25, the Baltimore Ravens released Michael Crabtree, making him a free agent. Crabtree will instantly become one of the best wide receivers on the open market. Now is the time to look into teams that may be interested in upgrading their WR corps this season.
On the top of that list would be the Buffalo Bills. The Bills had one of the worse receiving corps in the league last season. The team was led by undrafted rookie free agent Robert Foster and former second-round pick Zay Jones. All the other WRs were pieced together throughout the season. Clearly, there is a need to add proven players to the position. The Bills have around $80 million in cap space to make upgrades to their roster.
Crabtree had a strong start to the 2018 season averaging 8.5 targets a game in Weeks 1-9 with Joe Flacco as starting QB. When Lamar Jackson took over the Ravens became more of a running team, and his targets dropped to 3.5. Crabtree finished with 100 targets, while only 72 were considered catchable. Out of those 72 catchable, he was able to haul in 54, giving him at 75 percent catch rate. He was only credited for five drops this past season. In the red zone, Crabtree was perfect with five catches and two touchdowns.
Jones led the Bills with 6.3 targets per game with Nathan Peterman, Josh Allen, Derek Anderson, and Matt Barkley at QB. The Bills had a total of 54 drops as a team, 3.5 per game. Jones led the Bills in red zone targets, receptions, and touchdowns with 17/7/5, but was only a 41 percent completion percentage when targeted.
Looking at the stats from last season it looks like Jones and Crabtree comparable. They are both similar build and speed wise but Jones will be on a more cost-controlled contract for the next two years. The Bills should look into acquiring Crabtree, both as a mentor to Jones and a reliable target for Josh Allen.