The San Francisco 49ers are set to face the Washington Redskins on Monday night for what should be a victory for the 49ers, and it is a great opportunity for struggling second-year star QB Colin Kaepernick to have a bounce-back game. If No. 1 wide receiver Michael Crabtree somehow returns to play in that game, then Kaep’s bounce-back prospects would rise significantly. The Redskins pass defense is easily one of the worst in the NFL, so it would be a disappointment to see Kaepernick struggle to move the ball on them.
CSN Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco reports that the 49ers will activate Crabtree from the PUP list to the 53-man roster within the next six days, so there is still a slight chance that Crabtree plays this week against the Redskins. That slim chance, though, seems extremely slim, as Maiocco predicts that Crabtree’s chances of playing this week do “not appear likely”.
There’s still a distinct possibility that the 49ers could allow him to play, and I bet they’ll try to milk that out for as long as possible in order to keep the Redskins on their toes. The 49ers could very well activate Crabtree to the 53-man roster before the game and then put him on the inactive list on gameday, but they would probably want the flexibility of an extra roster spot.
This is something to keep a close eye on, and the 49ers will have to activate Crabtree before the 26th (Crabtree would revert to season-ending IR if they fail to activate him by then, which is a scenario that won’t happen). He is a lock to play against the rival St. Louis Rams, and that will most likely be when Crabtree makes his season debut. His return would be absolutely huge for this offense, because it would give Kaepernick his best target back and, more importantly, really open things up for everyone else.