PROGRAMMING ALERT: 49ers Central featuring Michael Crabtree airs on Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.
As Michael Crabtree walked off the field in Seattle after the 49ers secured a 19-17 win on Dec. 24, he stopped near the entrance to the tunnel, took off his cleats and gave one shoe each to separate fans in the crowd who happened to be wearing his jersey.A Christmas present, Crabtree was heard to say. The receiver then proceeded to the locker room in his socks.A dynamic receiver on the field, Crabtree's game day attire is grabbing almost as much attention as his play. The three-year veteran closets an extensive shoe collection which includes a season's worth of new cleats.He'll often tweet out photos of his favorite custom cleats, like the pink and white pair he sported in October during the NFL's campaign to raise awareness for breast cancer. He chooses a new pair for every game which he complements with a matching pair of gloves. He never wears the same cleats twice.Crabtree explained to me his thought process when it comes to selecting his ensemble during a sit down interview in which he's the focus of the player profile for this week's 49ers Central."With the Niners, I really can't do too much. So I'm thinking you got black, you got your white and red, your white and black, your black and red. It depends on how you're feeling," Crabtree said. "If we're playing on Sunday, I'm picking Sunday morning right then and there. Right before the game I lay my outfit out. You know how you've got the first day of school? You lay your outfit out, put the shoes right there. I pretty much do that on Sunday morning."This week, Crabtree will make that decision on Saturday morning, as the 49ers play the New Orleans Saints at 1:30 p.m. in an NFC divisional playoff game.Most telling of Crabtree's mindset is that he did not have a special pair of cleats designed for the game, even though it's San Francisco's first playoff appearance since the 2002 season.Crabtreee says the game is not big enough to warrant a custom pair. He's waiting for something bigger. He's waiting for the Super Bowl.