Like many of his peers, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh likes to keep his cards pressed tightly to his ubiquitous black long sleeve T-shirt-sweatshirt hybrid.
When it comes to whether receiver Michael Crabtree will make his 2013 debut on Sunday against the Saints, Harbaugh was uncharacteristically chatty.
“It doesn’t look probable, no,” Harbaugh told reporters on Friday.
To say the Niners need Crabtree would be an understatement along the lines of saying Harbaugh needs to expand his wardrobe. The passing game has sputtered this year, with Colin Kaepernick averaging 157 yards passing per game since hanging an unexpected 412 on the Packers (who were expecting that many rushing yards) in Week One.
Crabtree tore an Achilles tendon during offseason workouts. He returned to practice on November 7, which means the 49ers have until November 28 to add him to the active roster or shut him down for the rest of the season.
“[H]e had a week of running routes, of sprinting, pushing the sled, lifting, training and catching,” Harbaugh said regarding Crabtree’s practices in recent days. “He wasn’t part of the team workout, but controlled would be the best way to say it.”
After traveling to New Orleans, the 49ers visit Washington for a Monday night game, then host St. Louis and Seattle.