Though he's bothered by a sore foot, former wunderkind wide receiver Michael Crabtree is expected to play Sunday against the Lions. With his co-receiver Josh Morgan on injured reserve and Braylon Edwards still on the shelf, this could be the opportunity Crabtree needs to break out and fulfill the mild preseason expectations placed on him.
Crabtree will start opposite fellow underachieving Top 10 pick Ted GInn Jr. while Morgan and Edwards are out, so the looks from the surprisingly effective Alex Smith should come. What Crabtree can do with them remains to be seen. The Lions D is developing a reputation for haranguing quarterbacks, but their defensive backs can be exploited if Smith can release the ball quickly.
Crabtree had just two receptions in his last game, so it's going to take a few good performances to earn his way back into the circle of trust.