SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Just as the passing game has started to click for the San Francisco 49ers at last, here comes Michael Crabtree.
The team's top wide receiver from 2012 is back on the active roster six months after Achilles tendon surgery and poised to make his season debut Sunday against St. Louis if all goes as hoped during practice this week.
"There's things he does that he's the best in football at, and that certainly bodes well for us and we're excited about it," coach Jim Harbaugh said Wednesday. "Catching the ball, there's routes that he runs, tackles he breaks, plays that he makes. There's evidence there."
Adding Crabtree to the mix for the 49ers (7-4) would provide a big boost to a receiving corps that made significant strides in a 27-6 win at Washington on Monday night. Crabtree became Colin Kaepernick's top target last year and had career bests of 85 receptions for 1,105 yards and nine touchdowns.
"I'm good," Crabtree said but he wouldn't elaborate. He was activated from the physically unable to perform list Tuesday to the 53-man active roster.
Harbaugh won't tip his hand too early in the week, while also noting that everything depends on how Crabtree gets through practice.
John Fox headed back to Broncos
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- John Fox is returning to work on Monday, less than a month after undergoing open-heart surgery, and he plans to coach the Denver Broncos in their game against the Tennessee Titans on Dec. 8.
What hasn't been determined is whether Fox will coach from the sideline or the booth. Fox Sports first reported Fox's impending return.
Team owner Pat Bowlen sent his private jet to Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday to bring Fox and his wife, Robin, back to Denver. Fox had been recuperating at his offseason home following aortic valve replacement surgery on Nov. 4.
Defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio has coached the team in Fox's absence.
The Broncos visit the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday in an AFC West showdown of 9-2 teams.
Henderson latest Viking arrested
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings are struggling both on and off the field.
Middle linebacker Erin Henderson became the latest to find trouble, when news of his drunken-driving arrest surfaced Wednesday. Wide receiver Jerome Simpson was jailed Nov. 9 and later charged with two counts of DWI. Cornerback A.J. Jefferson was released Monday mere hours after he was arrested following a fight with his girlfriend. Jefferson was charged Wednesday with one count of felony domestic assault by strangulation.
That's three police-blotter appearances in three weeks for a team with a 2-8-1 record.
"The fact that we have had three recent off field situations is unacceptable and disappointing," general manager Rick Spielman said in a prepared statement. "Our organization looks at each situation and the circumstances involved to determine our actions with those players and how to best move forward. The Vikings have a comprehensive approach with our player development program and excellent resources that are a part of this organization, but certainly we will take a methodical look at how we can improve upon our current programs to prevent these situations in the future."