The Tampa Bay Buccaneers decided to put in a little work at the end of the work week, and right around midnight on Friday night, they signed Tom Crabtree, tight end from the Green Bay Packers. You may remember him from this moment from the 2012 season, especially if you had Aaron Rodgers on your fantasy team. So what are the Buccaneers getting by bringing in Tom Crabtree?
First of all, he’s 6 feet, 4 inches tall, and weighs almost 250 pounds. This means he’s got the build to be a receiving option in the red zone, while not being completely overpowered by defenders. He isn’t going to be the best lead blocker for running plays, but he won’t be useless if called upon to block. In fact, Packers fan and fellow Fansided writer Curt Hogg had this to say about Crabtree:
@utepminers Football-wise: Great hands, solid blocker, good on special teams, tends to be in the right place at the right time.
— Curt Hogg (@YouAStupidHogg) March 16, 2013
So why was he so under the radar, and what makes him a good pickup for the Buccaneers? As a pass catcher, Crabtree was stuck behind a plethora of other options, as around 6 wide receivers and Jermichael Finley all had their chances before Crabtree would ever get a look. So his career 18 catches shouldn’t be too much of a surprise. The fact that 4 of those 18 catches are touchdowns is encouraging, and his ability to break big plays and find the right place to be on broken plays is a good sign.
Crabtree has also been a special teams contributor, adding 17 tackles in his career. He’s a hard worker and seems to be a very interesting guy, based on his Twitter account. He seems to be a fit for the kind of guys Greg Schiano likes to bring in, and figures to compete with Luke Stocker and Nate Byham for time at tight end. His versatility will serve him well, and assuming the Bucs didn’t break the bank for him, he should be a solid addition to the team in 2013.
Update: Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that the contract details for Crabtree are 2 years, 1.6 million dollars total salary. Very reasonable deal, giving him an extra year compared to the contract offer from Green Bay.