Jim Harbaugh says Crabtree has the best hands of all time

AP

San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh is never shy about talking up his players, and he did so in a big way after Sunday’s big win over the Packers.

Harbaugh said after the game that 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree, who had eight catches for 125 yards, has the best hands in the history of the game.

“People talk about cold weather, and it being tough to catch balls,” Harbaugh said. “But the greatest catcher of all time, Michael Crabtree, catches everything. It’s unbelievable. In the northern snow lands, down to the tropic sunny scenes, he’s catching the football. Where ever they throw a football, he’ll be catching it.”

That’s a statement Harbaugh has made before, and although Harbaugh knows it’s awfully bold, he stands by it.

“If my life depended on it, somebody had to catch a ball, I’d enlist Michael Crabtree to do it,” Harbaugh said.

Harbaugh’s life probably won’t ever depend on Crabtree catching a pass. But if a 49ers game depends on it, Harbaugh is glad to have Crabtree on his team.

153 responses to “Jim Harbaugh says Crabtree has the best hands of all time

  1. Jim your drunk from a wildcard victory,,, just drink a pepsi and get your khakis to the cleaners

  2. It’s two seconds after the game, he’s jacked, and he’s telling a player how much he appreciates him. This is not a rare thing.

  3. i never seen a player like crabtree look to the refs after every play looking for a call. Well I guess the same could be said about the coach as well. After thinking about it some more, maybe its the entire team.

  4. Seriously like a few other people have observed, even if you don’t like Cris Carter his hands were undeniably great.

  5. Crabtree’s hands arent’ has good as Cris Carter’s…but he was awfully effective tonight against the Packers’ soft corners.

  6. Michelangelo had the greatest hands of all time, has Harbuagh ever seen the Sistine Chapel!?

  7. Yo coach Harbaugh, I’mma let you finish… but Cris Carter had the greatest hands of all time!

    – Kanye West

  8. MDS, I am shocked and disappointed that you didn’t make a reference to he episode of Seinfeld where George becomes a hand model.

  9. And somewhere, a Raiders’ fan will still swear that Al was right to pass on Crabtree and pick DHB. After all, nothing is more important than that 40 time, right.

  10. This stuff right here makes you root against sf hell of a win but no way in hell this is anywhere near true top 1000. Hands I can handle but that’s it

  11. Lance Alworth, Otis Taylor, Anquan Boldin, Fred Biletnicoff, Chris Carter, Tony Gonzales, Rod Smith…just to name a few Jim.

  12. “If my life depended on it, somebody had to catch a ball, I’d enlist Michael Crabtree to do it,” Harbaugh said.
    _________________________________

    Comments like this really tempt fate. Sorta set the stage for a critical drop in the NFCC game or Super Bowl.

  13. Man, how disrespectful to Rice and Boldin, other 49ers. Not to mention Carter, Fitzgerald and many, many others. Harbaugh needs to get a grip on himself. Hilarious!

  14. radrntn says:
    Jan 5, 2014 8:59 PM
    i never seen a player like crabtree look to the refs after every play looking for a call. Well I guess the same could be said about the coach as well. After thinking about it some more, maybe its the entire team.

    ——————-

    They were holding him all game. The refs finally called it late in the game. I understand that you don’t like the 9ers, but doesn’t change the facts.

  15. Jim Harbaugh later said that he was the greatest coach of all time…forgetting a guy named walsh

  16. It’s really hard to give receivers credit for a lot of the catches they make in today’s game. There is almost no fear of going over the middle, looking out of the corner of your eye for that cornerback, or hearing footsteps because of the new rules with defenseless receivers. Also with the “special sticky” gloves made with a rubbery material on the palms to help hold on to a football. Seems like average players are making catches that make them appear to be great players.

  17. I love how people dog NBA players for flopping and follow it up with “If he did that in the NFL….” Yes, players flop and complain in the NFL just like any other sport. Players and coaches look for calls to help them win, it’s not limited to SF.

  18. Harbaugh gets a lot of hate, but 90% of teams would take him as their HC in a heartbeat. People really have forgotten how bad SF was before he got there.

  19. 1bigtex says:
    Jan 5, 2014 9:05 PM
    And somewhere, a Raiders’ fan will still swear that Al was right to pass on Crabtree and pick DHB. After all, nothing is more important than that 40 time, right.

    —————————–

    Somewhere from your safe couch, you take no risks and MMQB every week to match your narrative. Mavericks take risks and create.

    Al told his staff to go for the singles, he was going for the home runs. Sometimes you miss. That scares underachievers like you to death. Stay safe and stay in the comfort of your MMQBing

  20. CC had the best hands of alltime…..I don’t know if I ever saw him drop an easy ball.

    He had some of the most acrobatic, one hand catches I have ever seen.

    Jimmy was just psyched up……but he is psycho if he thinks Crabtree has better hands than CC.

  21. I challenge any one of you to question that.

    Oh that’s right, you’re sitting along side your teams/players watching the Niners play from home….

  22. I’m a huge niners fan but I can’t say crabs hands are better than Carter’s. Boldin is a great pass catcher but uses his body a lot. Rice was a GREAT route runner with really good hands. Crabs is #2 after C. C. Many of you MUST have not seen crabs play enough. SKILLZ!

  23. Don’t agree with his comments but give him a break… He is trying to motivate a playoff team. How many targets did DHB get yesterday from A. Luck??? Even luck won’t throw him the ball. Rice deserves the praise for best hands but I understand JH purpose. .. Nobody is giving Vernon Davis love.. That dude seems to catch everything thrown his way and the niners wouldn’t even be in the playoffs without VD

  24. You guys all need to realize that he’s not saying he’s the best wide receiver. He’s just saying that he has the best hands and probably the most reliable ones. Don’t get your panties in a bunch and relax.

  25. He was jacked up and in the moment. Too many people like to whine and over analyze anything. That said I think Boldin was actually #1 in the NFL this year for the lowest drop percentage. Best part is Boldin will say Crabtree is better. Crabtree has very good hands, Harbaugh is a bit nutty. These are things we all knew already.. so why beat the dead horse?

  26. Please, all you 49er fans, you can’t be serious about holding now, you got all the official breaks in the game starting with hands to the face when clearly it was at the least both ways. That was a 4 point swing right there. Last I looked you won by 3.

  27. he might be right. thats his opinion. how often does crabtree drop a pass? very rarely.

  28. boyshole25 says:
    Jan 5, 2014 9:48 PM
    Hell of a team singletary built in the bay!
    __________________________________
    Just a little bit of facts for you… The only players Singletary got a bone tossed his way with (He had no say on personnel at all) Were Iupati, Anthony Davis, Taylor Mays, and Kentwan Balmer. You can make a fair argument for the two linemen, but Balmer is out of the league, and Mays is off the team and garbage. There were plenty of players that were drafted while he was there… but most were lackluster or buried on the depth chart. Harbaugh and Baalke have added quite a few PB players and All pros to that roster. Not to mention a few that got snubbed like Eric Reid

  29. hawkforlife says:
    Jan 5, 2014 9:52 PM
    Please, all you 49er fans, you can’t be serious about holding now, you got all the official breaks in the game starting with hands to the face when clearly it was at the least both ways. That was a 4 point swing right there. Last I looked you won by 3.
    ___________________________________
    Seriously get a life.. how about the 1st and 2nd drives with blatant PI’s on Crabtree in the endzone? Guess what… that’s an 8 point swing right there. Can’t wait to watch you guys flop so 90% of you disappear and jump on new wagons

  30. Dont think its mostly 49er fans complaining bout the officiating. Was not tightly called either way, lost of contact both ways – Packers Oline did alot of holding, 9ers secondary did some mugging of their own. This game did not swing on officiating, it came down to execution. Micah Hyde had a big chance and didnt come through, Kaepernick did. Was a better game than I expected as a Packer fan. Congrats to the 49ers. Im already excited about this Packer team next year.

  31. goldrush36

    For the record I enjoyed the fact that the refs actually let BOTH teams defensive backs play the game. Apparently you only see what you want to see.

    Most of us are sick to death of watching your coach flap his arms and complain for 3 hours.

  32. You gotta give harbaugh credit for one thing though………he gives all of us non-niners fans a coach to root against. Good coach….annoying dude.

  33. This is a great story to hear about.
    Not so. for packer backers. they would rather have justifications for the loss. Something to the tune of; “our team suffered too many injuries” or “Golden Tate didn’t catch that ball, it was an interception.”

  34. johngaltwho says:
    Jan 5, 2014 9:56 PM
    Jordy Nelson!!!!!!!

    Better than Crabtree every day of the week and twice on Sundays.
    ****************************************

    Just not this Sunday…

  35. The Panthers beat a Niners team that basically had Anquan Boldin and a less than healthy Vernon Davis for receivers. They were able to double up on both of them all day and I don’t think Davis was in for the entire game. Since there was basically one and a half viable receivers available, the Panthers loaded up on the run. They beat the Niners by one point and were one Vance McDonald missed catch away from losing by six. This will be a different offense next Sunday. And, the Niner defense has Aldon Smith back now – he wasn’t in that game either.

  36. It’s not difficult to catch 7 yard outs. Try burning the secondary for a 40 yard deep ball. Oh wait…that would require speed. It would also require an accurate qb.

    Stupid comment. But considering he downplayed Shermans talent, and all he’s done is gone all pro in 2/3s of his NFL carrer, it goes to show what Harbaughs assessment of talent is.

  37. I can’t say I’ve seen C.C. play to say that Crab is better at catching passes but I have been saying that Crab has the best hands I’ve ever seen for about the last four years. He really does make some incredible catches!! Let’s go niners

  38. I always find it curious that in these “whose hands are/were the best in the NFL” debates, the one name hardly ever mentioned is Tim Brown. He finished his career with 1,094 receptions. While he is behind in career numbers behind both Rice and Carter, there is one little detail that separates him from the others. Tim Brown never wore receiver gloves, he only taped up his fingers. In a “best hands” discussion, shouldn’t the gear worn (or not worn) come into play?

  39. jim is right .. he didn’t say he is the greatest WR of all time .. he said he has the best hands of any WR. and he is right. a lot of receivers let the ball bang into their body .. crab catches it purely with the hands. alshon jefferies of CHI also has great hands. but my money is on crab

  40. kylexitron says: “I have to give harbaugh credit. Somehow, despite being a dislikeable idiot, he somehow manages to be a pretty good coach. I’m not sure how.”

    1. He’s definitely not an idiot.
    2. Niner fans find him very likable.
    3. He’s a lot better than a “pretty good coach.” I believe he has the best win-loss record in the league over the last three seasons he’s been in the NFL.

  41. Harbaugh has a point here, considering GB’s secondary raped the SF WR’s the entire first half. Crabtree had a killer 1st half being double teamed by Tramon Williams & referee Ed Hochuli….

  42. Wait until AFTER you Re-Sign Crabbs, before you say that !!

    Or re-sign him, right away

    Either way, I won’t disagree
    Some of the catches he made today …..

    Go Niners

  43. Are you kidding me? This is really too easy. Since he’s been in the league he’s averaging a drop every 9 or 10 passes.
    This is nothing more than the NFL equivalent of “punch-drunk”.

  44. Omg guys calm down. They just pulled off an incredible win that was lookin like it’d be a loss. He’s happy and just exagerrated. No need to kill the guy damn. You sound like seattle fans calling harbaugh a whiner. Excuse me, have you EVER seen pete carrol? He whines about everything. Chewimg his damn gum like he hasn’t eaten in months.

  45. Cris Carter had great regular season hands, remember that dominant post season run he had? Me either cause he was shut out and taken away every time he went.

  46. Harbaugh is a great coach, but he is a jerk and his players certainly take on his persona. Not a play goes by that Harbaugh isn’t whining to the officials and the same goes for Crabtree. It’s every play that doesn’t go their way. People complain about Brady, but they are in another league. Harbaugh is on the field half the time when he shouldn’t be. They still are whining about the end of the Super Bowl last year! If they keep it up there will be more calls that don’t go their way I’m sure as the officials must be getting sick of them.

  47. Man I thought I couldn’t hate Harbaugh and the niners more than I already do. It’s amazing how the team I’m supposed to hate as a Seahawks fan makes it so easy. I really hope they beat the panthers and we beat the saints. A Super Bowl would be the best but might as well have fun on the way and shut Harbaugh and the rest of you niner tools up on the way. It could backfire and we could lose and it would devastate me but I’ll take that chance to watch Harbaugh and niner nation crumble. No one cries better than Harbaugh.

  48. The fact that there are soooo many ignorant NFL “fans” of other teams that hate this guy just speaks to him being a helluva ball coach.

  49. keepingitrealdumb says:
    Jan 5, 2014 10:27 PM
    jim is right .. he didn’t say he is the greatest WR of all time .. he said he has the best hands of any WR. and he is right. a lot of receivers let the ball bang into their body .. crab catches it purely with the hands. alshon jefferies of CHI also has great hands. but my money is on crab

    ———-

    It’s one thing for a coach to say something nice about a player after a game. Can’t fault Harbaugh too much, but it’s definitely not true. Rice, Carter, Moss, Harrison all had better hands. Fitzgerald has better hands and he’s still playing. That’s the very tip of the iceberg.

  50. jimmydixx12 says:
    Jan 5, 2014 10:46 PM
    The fact that there are soooo many ignorant NFL “fans” of other teams that hate this guy just speaks to him being a helluva ball coach.

    ——-

    No one hates him because he works for the 49ers or because he’s a good coach. It’s because he’s a whiny jerk. His brother is much more likeable, but maybe not quite as good a coach.

  51. A majority of Niner fans are completely aware that Jim is hardly ever politically correct and is a complete homer. At that same token, anyone who isn’t a Patriots fan would KILL to have this guy as their head coach. Great leader, us against the world mentality.

  52. cris who?????? what a J O K E of a player on and off the field. ART MONK 81 Clearly The Best WR to play the game period end of conversation. !!!!!!!!!!!!

  53. While Crabtree is a solid #1 WR, I wouldn’t tout him as having the greatest hands of all time just yet. He has had 27 drops over his career, giving him an average of 5.4 each season.

    By comparison, Percy Harvin has 11 drops over the same 5 year career. Hakeem Nicks has 22 Drops in this same 5 year career. Here is another one. Kenny Britt with 16 drops. Jeremy Maclin with 19. And here’s the insult, Darrius Heyward-Bay with 26 drops over his 5 year career.

    Just look up Sporting Charts on google, that site has everything

  54. kd75 says:
    Jan 5, 2014 10:39 PM

    Crabtree couldn’t hold Steve Largent’s jockstrap.
    —-
    maybe….just maybe he could wash it though

  55. Uhmmm. what about Boldins hands ?!?.. He was one of the main reasons why you beat AZ last week. Boldin is underrated, he doesn’t get the recognition that he deserves.

  56. bullcharger says: Jan 5, 2014 10:49 PM

    keepingitrealdumb says:
    Jan 5, 2014 10:27 PM
    jim is right .. he didn’t say he is the greatest WR of all time .. he said he has the best hands of any WR. and he is right. a lot of receivers let the ball bang into their body .. crab catches it purely with the hands. alshon jefferies of CHI also has great hands. but my money is on crab

    ———-

    It’s one thing for a coach to say something nice about a player after a game. Can’t fault Harbaugh too much, but it’s definitely not true. Rice, Carter, Moss, Harrison all had better hands. Fitzgerald has better hands and he’s still playing. That’s the very tip of the iceberg.

    ===============

    good call .. i had forgotten about Fitz .. yeah .. Fitz has fantastic hands. did moss catch purely with his hands? i seem to recall a couple of balls banging into his chest .. perhaps he can do both.

  57. If not for Harbaugh’s incessant whining, and Kaepernick (and a bunch of media morons) thinking he is the best QB to ever play the game, I’d cheer for them next week.

    I guess I don’t get how all the media is acting like the Niners just won the Super Bowl. The barely beat Green Bay, and the team is a cobbled up squad of misfits and outcasts. Most of the guys on the field for Green Bay today were back-ups. Hardly a resounding victory when a team like Green bay takes the Niners right to the final whistle.

  58. @bullcharger

    Because he’s a “whiny jerk”? So, because he’s always barking at the refs (not opposing players, fans or still employed head coaches) that makes him a jerk? This just in, Phil Jackson used to ride refs in the nba forever, Tommy Lasorda with the Dodgers, Bobby Knight, and so on and so on…Harbaugh’s no different. To say you “hate” a guy solely because of that is sad…this is professional football, he ain’t paid to make you feel warm inside – he’s paid to win and he’s pretty good at that.

  59. Harbaugh should know, cuz crabtree’s hands have been all over his balls all year long. Jimmy H is a giant baby/Douche Bag, and Crabby is a giant baby too. I wouldn’t be sad if their plane went down…I’ll settle for Carolina humiliating them next weekend.

  60. Harbaugh also added that the neckwarmer he wore during the game was the warmest of all time and that if his life depended on it, he would use Visa and not Mastercard.

  61. When he catches his 1550ths pass then we can talk about it. At his current NFL average, that will only take 23 more years to make.
    (5years/279 catches)

  62. First lets put things in perspective. They were playing theeeeeeeee worst pass defense in all the NFL. This team is used to setting new marks for yardage given up.
    They say their dbacks are 6’1. Ya right. Try 5’10, slow, smallish and poor tacklets and cover guys.
    They were all passed over by every team in the NFL at least 2 or more times, most were 5th round or later.
    Pretty much a one eyed receiver with gimpy legs could have a decent day against these guys.

    When you have football commentators saying ‘my gosh this team gives up so many big plays’ over and over again each week. Hey it ain’t about Crabtree.

  63. Yeah ok and Harbaugh believe he was the best QB of all-time. First off, Harbaugh is not all that great of a coach and i am die hard 49er fan. Ok let’s look at my statement. In the first qrter, they are first and goal at the 6 yard line. They call 3 straight pass plays. Well Gore had two great runs during that drive. Why abandoned the run? Then in the 2nd qrter, they are first and 10 at the 11 and the first play is a pass. Really? They had to settle for a field goal. Basically, they should have been up 21-7 at halftime. So before I believe anything Harbaugh has to say, he has to prove he can be a good play calling coach.

  64. Seahawks fans love to complain about Jim Harbaugh. 49’ers fans love to complain about Pete Carroll. From an impartial perspective one tends to respect Harbaugh but not like him. On the other hand one tends to like Carroll but not respect him. Harbaugh resurrected a dormant Stanford program and built it into a powerhouse without a whiff of NCAA improprieties. And has had no major PED issues with the 49’ers. Carroll took a powerhouse USC program and left it in shambles with major NCAA sanctions still affecting the program today… and there have been serious PED issues associated with the Seahawks. Whiny Harbaugh appears to play by the rules. Likeable Carroll appears to treat rules as speed bumps. One has earned respect. One hasn’t.

  65. I guess he’s never heard of

    Marvin Harrison, Cris Carter, Steve Largent, Kellen Winslow, Randy Moss etc. What a moron. Crabtree doesn’t even have the best hands on the team.

  66. Game would not even have been close except for the officials.
    crazy missed PI calls in the first quarter.
    Guess that roid crazy ref really likes the home team.

  67. He may have great hands, but he was about 2 seconds late recognizing the snap on the play where Kaepernick ran for a first down late.

    You may say, who cares, but Kaepernick had to pull the ball down because Crabtree wasn’t out of his route on time. It also looked like Crabtree was the only option, Kap didn’t look at any of the other 3.

    The run worked out because GB botched a stunt on the pass rush. If properly executed, Kap would have had one guy in his face unblocked and one guy containing the edge. Instead the guys ran into each other and Staley blocked them both.

  68. What a joke. Underachieving TE Rob “Skillet Hands” Housler has mitts at least as good as Crabs. The guy can’t even get on the field in training camp or early in the season.

  69. This myth of Jerry Rice having great hands really needs to stop. Now. Rice led the league in drops virtually every season he played. He just made so many plays that people overlooked them. Plus, the commentators would consistently say after every Rice drop, “wow, and even the greatest of all-time is human after all.” They’d say this twice in just about every game, as you could find at least 2 Rice drops in virtually every game he played. It’s one of the best-kept secrets in NFL history. I say this as someone who owns well over 100 games on DVD from Rice’s career in San Francisco.

    Rice was great because of his explosiveness, he did NOT have great hands. He wasn’t even close to Crabtree in that one respect.

    Now, I wouldn’t go nearly as far as Harbaugh and say Crabtree has the greatest hands in NFL history. For one thing, the game has really smoothed out in the modern era – drops used to be far more common, in part because of the developments in glove “technology,” and in part because of the general evolution of the game in terms of techniques and training.

    But he certainly has elite hands in the modern game. I don’t know if he’s as good or better than Fitzgerald in that area, but he’s up there.

  70. Cris Carter had better hands then anyone who has ever played. Crabtree does not even register on carter’s level. Plus carter did it when wideouts got hit. Crabtree would probably cry if he had to deal with ronnie lott, or steve Atwater while trying make a catch going across the middle.

  71. Jim was excited for the win.

    He was applauding Crab for the big catches in clutch moments that contributed to a big win.

    How many WRs could do what he did, in frigid conditions, after missing 80% of the season?

    Give it a break.

    Happy Coach doing his media obligations.

    He wasn’t comparing Crab to anyone else, simply giving him high praise for his game contributions.

  72. JSpicoli says: Jan 5, 2014 9:29 PM

    1bigtex says:
    Jan 5, 2014 9:05 PM
    And somewhere, a Raiders’ fan will still swear that Al was right to pass on Crabtree and pick DHB. After all, nothing is more important than that 40 time, right.

    —————————–

    Somewhere from your safe couch, you take no risks and MMQB every week to match your narrative. Mavericks take risks and create.

    Al told his staff to go for the singles, he was going for the home runs. Sometimes you miss. That scares underachievers like you to death. Stay safe and stay in the comfort of your MMQBing
    ____________________________

    I knew at least one of you would show up. When the scouting report reads; great speed, but questionable hands and limited route running ability, why should anyone be surprised. Of course, the Vikings took a DHB clone in Troy Williamson a few seasons earlier with the exact same overall #7 pick because of a 40 time. Problem is that Al whiffed big time on too many high picks in the last several years of his career.

  73. I’d like to see him catch HALF the passes that Boldin does over the middle. THAT takes talent AND toughness.
    He wouldn’t survive in the slot!

  74. Since 2009 … worst receivers in the league in terms of drop percentages

    Receiver Drop Pct.
    Darrius Heyward-Bey 8.4
    Donald Driver 7.0
    Santana Moss 6.3
    Dwayne Bowe 6.0
    James Jones 6.0
    Michael Crabtree 5.9

    6th last in the league … add that up Jim ya Goat

  75. To the one fan talking Harbaugh vs Carroll on earned respect. I know its your opinion but maybe you didn’t notice last year NFL GMs went after Pete Carroll’s coaching staff for head coaching jobs. We lost Gus Bradly and now possibly Seahawks lose Pete’s 1st year replacement at defensive coordinator and maybe even offensive coordinator to HC jobs.

    Teams want to bring in Pete Carroll type systems to their clubs because of the success they are having. So this lack of respect you’re talking about is merely subjective fan opinion.

  76. Have to sort of take that with a grain of salt. They just won the game vs the Packers and Crabs played a big part in that so I would expect Harbaugh to be complimentary to the WR. So Crabs makes the offense better but there have been lots of WR’s who have set records on their way to a great career. Rice is one of them. If Crabs can stay injury free for most of his career he could be one of the great ones. Only time will tell if he does.

  77. They barely beat a Packers team with one of the worst defenses in the NFL and everyone is anointing them.

  78. Don’t doubt that he has great hands…but one other good description would be the best “push off” move since Chris Carter!

  79. “Harbaugh’s life probably won’t ever depend on Crabtree catching a pass.”

    Until I’m elected president and make NFL Hunger Games a thing.

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