Top 49ers WR Michael Crabtree’s return to full health – and he sure looks like he has, moving well in Saturday’s practice and making a one-handed catch in traffic – headlines a group with improved depth and talent.
Anquan Boldin remains tough and crafty at age 33. Stevie Johnson, who had three straight 1,000-yard seasons in Buffalo from 2010 to ’12, arrived in a trade. General manager Trent Baalke made a point to praise rookie Bruce Ellington (“a young guy that’s come in and showed an awful lot of promise”) second-year pro Quinton Patton (“a year older, a year better”), and even 33-year-old Brandon Lloyd (“playing like he’s 28 years old out there”). RB Frank Gore said it’s “by far” the best receiver group the 49ers have had in his 10 seasons.
The 49ers have a lot of big names at WR, but outside of Crabtree and Boldin, fantasy owners will have to see where Johnson fits in, and perhaps even Lloyd. Either way, QB Colin Kaepernick figures to benefit the most from this experienced group around him.