River Cracraft
refer to caption
Cracraft (21) lining up at wide receiver for Washington State against Stanford in 2014
Free agent
Position:Wide receiver
Return specialist
Personal information
Born: (1994-11-01) November 1, 1994 (age 26)
Rancho Santa Margarita, California
Height:6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight:195 lb (88 kg)
Career information
High school:Santa Margarita Catholic
(Rancho Santa Margarita, CA)
College:Washington State
Career history
* Denver Broncos ( 2017 2018)
Career NFL statistics as of 2018
Receiving yards:44
Receiving touchdowns:0
Return yards:83
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

River Cracraft (born November 1, 1994) is an American football wide receiver and return specialist who is currently a free agent. He played college football at Washington State.

Early life and high school

Cracraft was born Rancho Santa Margarita, California and grew up in nearby Trabuco Canyon. He attended Santa Margarita Catholic High School, were he played football and baseball and ran track. In football, he was a four year letter winner and played both wide receiver and defensive back and was named All-State and All-Trinity League in his sophomore season after recording 35 receptions for 469 yards on offense while making 41 tackles with three interceptions on defense. He was named All-State, All-CIF and All-Trinity League as a junior after recording 46 receptions for 654 yards and six touchdowns for the Eagles as the team went on to win the 2011 Division I State Championship. As a senior, Cracraft caught 56 passes for 935 yards and 10 touchdowns and recorded an interception with five pass breakups on defense and was named first team All-County by the Orange County Register and the Trinity League Offensive Player of the Year.[1] He had a total of 134 receptions while playing for the Eagles, second in school history behind former NFL receiver Brian Finneran, and finished third in school history with 2,043 receiving yards.[2] Rated a three-star prospect by several major recruiting services and the number 91 overall prospect in California by ESPN.com, Cracraft committed to play college football at Washington State over offers from Nevada and UNLV.[3]

College career

Cracraft played four seasons for the Cougars. He appeared in all 13 of the Cougars games as a true freshman, starting 10 and recording 46 receptions for 614 yards and three touchdowns and was named honorable mention All-Pac-12 Conference and honorable mention All-Freshman Team by College Football News. The next year, Cracraft caught 66 passes for 771 yards and eight touchdowns despite missing three games to a stress fracture in his foot.[4] This included a career-high 172 yards and three touchdowns on 11 receptions in a 60-59 loss to California in which Washington State quarterback Connor Halliday passed for an NCAA record 734 yards.[5] The following game, Cracraft set a school record with 14 receptions in a game, along with 100 yards and a touchdown, in a 34-17 loss to Stanford, which was both tied and then broken later in the season by teammate Vince Mayle.[6] Cracraft entered his junior season on the 2015 Fred Biletnikoff Award watchlist, but missed three games due to a stress fracture in his opposite foot and finished the year with 53 receptions for 615 yards and four touchdowns.[7] He returned from his injury to play in the 2015 Sun Bowl and caught five passes for 63 yards in the Cougars' 20-14 win over the Miami Hurricanes.[8] Cracraft had 53 receptions, 701 receiving yards and five touchdowns in his senior season and was again named honorable mention All-Pac 12 before tearing his ACL in the tenth game of the season.[9] He recorded 218 receptions (No. 2 in school history behind teammate Gabe Marks), 2,701 receiving yards (6th) and 20 touchdowns (6th) in 42 games played while at Washington State.[10]

Professional career

Due to his knee injury Cracraft was unable to participate in the pre-draft process and ultimately went unselected 2017 NFL Draft and was not initially signed by any team as an undrafted free agent. He worked out for the New England Patriots in September of 2017 following a season-ending injury to Julian Edelman, but was not offered a contract by the team.[11] Cracraft was signed by the Denver Broncos to the team's practice squad on October 17, 2017 but was released by the team three days later after sustaining an injury in practice.[12] He was subsequently re-signed to the Broncos' practice squad later on in the season on December 18, 2017 and signed a futures contract with the team at the end of the season.[13][14]

Cracraft was signed to the Broncos' practice squad after being cut from the team's active roster at the end of the 2018 preseason.[15] He was cut from the practice squad on September 10, 2018 to make room for previously suspended wide receiver Carlos Henderson, but was re-signed on September 19.[14] Cracraft was promoted to the Broncos active roster on November 2, 2018 and made his NFL debut two days later in the Broncos' 19-17 loss to the Houston Texans, returning a punt for five yards.[16][17] He caught his first career pass, a 44-yard reception, on December 30, 2018 during the Broncos final game of the season vs. the Los Angeles Chargers. He finished the season with one reception for 44 yards, 12 punts returned for 40 yards (3.3 yards per return) and three kickoffs returned for 43 yards (14.3 yards per return) in eight games played.[18]

On September 1, 2019, Cracraft was waived by the Broncos.[19]

Personal life

Cracraft's older brother, Skyler, walked-on to the Cougars as a safety after River committed to the team despite not having played organized football since high school two years prior. Both of his parents are named Tracy, his father played baseball at Taft College.[20]


  1. Taylor, John (February 6, 2019). "Wazzu adds 24 as part of 2013 signing class". NBC Sports. https://collegefootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/02/06/wazzu-adds-24-as-part-of-2013-signing-class/comment-page-1/.
  2. Wright, Lew (November 12, 2013). "WSU Football: Mike Leach Says Some Cougs Are Catching On". FanSided. https://allcougdup.com/2013/11/12/wsu-footballmike-leach-says-cougs-catching/.
  3. Allen, Mark (June 18, 2013). "2013 Football Commit: River Cracraft". FanSided. https://allcougdup.com/2012/06/18/2013-football-commit-river-cracraft/.
  4. Loh, Stephanie (September 7, 2016). "Steady, dependable River Cracraft learns to ‘be a bully’ for the WSU Cougars". The Seattle Times. https://www.seattletimes.com/sports/wsu-cougar-football/steady-dependable-river-cracraft-learns-to-be-a-bully-for-the-wsu-cougars/.
  5. Thorpe, Jacob (October 5, 2014). "Errant FG try wastes record performance by Connor Halliday as WSU falls to Cal". The Spokesman-Review. http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2014/oct/05/errant-fg-try-wastes-record-performance-connor-hal/.
  6. Geranios, Nicholas (October 14, 2014). "Washington St heads into bye looking for maturity". The Morning Call. Associated Press. https://www.mcall.com/sdut-washington-st-heads-into-bye-looking-for-maturity-2014oct14-story.html.
  7. Rupp, Brennen (June 16, 2016). "Packers-12: Washington State Cougars to watch this fall". FanSided. https://dairylandexpress.com/2016/06/16/packers-12-washington-state-cougars-to-watch-this-fall/.
  8. Loh, Stephanie (December 27, 2015). "WSU Cougars’ high-powered offense slowed during snowy Sun Bowl victory". The Seattle Times. https://www.seattletimes.com/sports/wsu-cougar-football/wsu-cougars-high-powered-offense-slowed-during-snowy-sun-bowl/.
  9. "Ten Cougars earn All-Pac-12 honors, Luani and Marks to First Team". November 29, 2016. https://www.kxly.com/sports/ten-cougars-earn-all-pac-12-honors-luani-and-marks-to-first-team/213907177.
  10. Hegland, Brad (October 17, 2017). "Former WSU receiver River Cracraft signs with Denver Broncos". NBCRightNow.com. http://www.nbcrightnow.com/story/36620545/former-wsu-receiver-river-cracraft-signs-with-denver-broncos.
  11. Lawson, Theo (September 18, 2017). "Former Washington State receiver Cracraft gets workout with New England Patriots". The Spokesman-Review. http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2017/sep/18/former-washington-state-receiver-cracraft-gets-wor/.
  12. Loh, Stephanie (October 20, 2017). "River Cracraft finally gets his NFL shot .... with the Denver Broncos". The Seattle Times. https://www.seattletimes.com/sports/wsu-cougar-football/former-wsu-receiver-river-cracraft-signs-with-denver-broncos/.
  13. Lawson, Theo (December 18, 2017). "Ex-Washington State receiver River Cracraft re-signs with Denver Broncos practice squad". The Spokesman-Review. http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2017/dec/18/ex-washington-state-receiver-river-cracraft-re-sig/.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Kelberman, Zack (November 2, 2018). "Report: Broncos promote River Cracraft, cut Isaiah McKenzie". 247Sports.com. https://247sports.com/nfl/denver-broncos/Article/River-Cracraft-reportedly-promoted-from-practice-squad-Isaiah-McKenzie-cut-124128056/.
  15. Bedinger, Sayre (September 2, 2018). "Denver Broncos: 2017 draft picks highlight 11-man practice squad". PredominantlyOrange.com. FanSided. https://predominantlyorange.com/2018/09/02/denver-broncos-2017-draft-picks-highlight-10-man-practice-squad/.
  16. Alper, Josh (November 2, 2018). "Broncos promote WR River Cracraft". Pro Football Talk. NBC Sports. https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2018/11/02/broncos-promote-wr-river-cracraft/.
  17. Lynch, Tim (November 4, 2018). "Texans 19, Broncos 17: Brandon McManus misses potential game winner". MileHighReport.com. SB Nation. https://www.milehighreport.com/2018/11/4/18060834/texans-broncos-final-score-update.
  18. "Broncos' River Cracraft: Has potential future as returner". RotoWire.com. January 3, 2019. https://www.cbssports.com/fantasy/football/news/broncos-river-cracraft-has-potential-future-as-returner/.
  19. DiLalla, Aric (September 1, 2019). "Broncos claim four players off waivers, sign seven players to practice squad". https://www.denverbroncos.com/news/broncos-claim-four-players-off-waivers-sign-seven-players-to-practice-squad.
  20. Thorpe, Jacob (August 21, 2014). "Perfectionists like Washington State’s River Cracraft aren’t familiar with the term “off season”". The Spokesman-Review. http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2014/aug/21/perfectionists-like-washington-states-river/.

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