Crabtree Goes Down in OTA with Torn Achilles

49erscrabtree-wrTo make a run at a Super Bowl, one of the things a team needs is to be injury free. So this week has to be particularly troubling for the defending NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers. Leading receiver Michael Crabtree tore an Achilles tendon in off season OTA’s this week. 49er fans everywhere are probably thinking “oh no, it’s going to be one of those year” now. Injuries, for whatever reason, seem to come in bunches on a team. When they start in the off-season, that’s not a good sign.

The Philadelphia Eagles were a Super Bowl favorite this time two years ago. Many things derailed that train, but one of the main things was injuries. It’s not necessarily just a football thing either. Look at the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball. They were supposed to walk away with the American League East, but injuries to shortstop Jose Reyes and starting pitcher Josh Johnson have held them back. In the NBA, the Washington Wizards were absolutely crippled by injuries early in the season. Once John Wall, Nene, Trevor Ariza and Brad Beal were able to play together, the league found out that the Wizards are pretty good.

In football, injuries are just part of the game. In no other sport are your back ups so important. In a game of violent collisions, people will get hurt. But there are certain players a team cannot afford to lose. The New England Patriots can ill afford to lose Tom Brady. The Minnesota Vikings cannot lose Adrian Peterson. Crabtree may not quite be with those guys, but he is getting there. Make no mistake, this loss will hurt them.

The good news is the 49ers traded for Anquan Boldin after the Super Bowl. That was a “can’t beat em, join em”, move that looks really good now. But this still hurts the Niners and their young quarterback Colin Kaepernick. How good would it have been to have both Crabtree and Boldin to throw to? Now defense can double-team Boldin. So essentially this injury may have cost Kaepernick two top receivers. This will put more pressure on the running game and the defense to step up. If injuries start to multiply, which it seems they often do, the 49ers could be in for a long season.

What does this mean for bettors? It means the Seattle Seahawks and St. Louis Rams become a bit more attractive. The Seahawks are already one of the favorites in the NFC West. This just makes them more-so.

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