DEFENDING HIS LIFE –  

AUGUST 27, 2021 – Crosby, who turned 24 on Aug. 22, was a Day 3 draft pick of the Raiders in 2019 out of Eastern Michigan, the No. 106 overall selection in the fourth round. He racked up 10 sacks as a rookie.  But it was in that offseason when Crosby decided he needed help.

“It was March 11 [2020], the day I got sober,” he said. “I was living in Hollywood. Strolled out there and checked into rehab … And the whole world was put on shut down. I was there for a month and then I was able to just get myself right. And then after rehab, for that month I went to a sober living [facility] and I was staying out in Venice Beach all the way until training camp. I was literally in treatment like for the whole offseason.  “It was a big struggle but looking back on my journey, I know five years, 10 years down the road, I’ll look back and be like, that was the biggest offseason of my life even though I was just trying to get my s— together and just trying to stay above water. I know if I can make it through that s— and get sober, I can do anything. It was special and I met some awesome people along the way.” Raiders owner Mark Davis said he was happy for Crosby. “I think it’s fantastic,” Davis said. “Everybody has their demons. Obviously, he recognized he had a problem and he went out and fixed it. Recognizing it and wanting to fix it is the No. 1 way to get the help you need. And he did it.”  Raiders coach Jon Gruden agreed.  “Maxx is an amazing man,” Gruden told ESPN. “He realized he had a problem and he isolated himself and conquered it. He has incredible mental toughness and a desire to be great. He’s a great inspiration for people to see what you can do if you’re committed to following through.”’ Crosby said teammate Darren Waller, a Pro Bowl tight end, has also been open about his battle with addiction and they have become close friends. “Here’s a guy that was deep,” Crosby said of Waller, “deep as hell and almost lost his life and he was able to come back and is now one of the best players in the league.

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