The Rise of a Condor: Maxx Crosby is Now the Face of the Raiders

Maxx Crosby during New England Patriots v Las Vegas Raiders in 2022
Maxx Crosby during New England Patriots v Las Vegas Raiders in 2022 / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
2 of 6

Only One College Wanted Him, But One Was All He Needed

Born on August 22, 1997, to Vera and Bryan in a small town north of Detroit, Maxx Crosby weighed a whopping 11 pounds and 9 ounces at birth. And as he mentioned in a tweet {}, the doctors had to break his collarbone just to get him out. This XXL baby had to be named with two x’s.

After an eventual move to Texas, a young Crosby grew up playing sports, which led to a successful high school basketball and football career with the Colleyville Heritage Panthers. He played middle linebacker until his senior year when a new coaching staff moved him to defensive end and tight end.

The move to defensive end changed everything – it kept his football life going. He would receive one offer to play Division 1 college football: Eastern Michigan University.

Crosby was a part of a changing culture at Eastern Michigan. The first year he played there, they earned their first winning season in 21 years and made a bowl game for the first time in 29 years. In the four years prior, they had three 2-10 seasons and a 1-11 season.

He went on to earn first-team all-conference in the MAC the next two seasons, led by his 127 tackles and 18.5 sacks in 24 games. Eastern Michigan would make yet another bowl game. With that, his football life continued.

His scouting report on called him an “average backup or special-teamer” with concerns of an under-developed body. But none of that mattered. Crosby was going to the 2019 NFL Combine and had a real chance at making an NFL roster.

At the NFL Combine, Crosby earned an athleticism score of 85, which was 1st amongst all edge rushers. He also impressed with his previously mentioned wingspan – it’s worth noting the California condor has the largest wingspan of any North American bird (so not only is the nickname appropriate, but it’s also fitting he ended up in California). However, he was still projected to be a late round pick. CBS Sports ranked him 23rd out of the 28 edge rushers in the 2019 NFL Draft.

But again, none of this mattered. Crosby had an opportunity to keep his football life going. He constantly improved throughout his high school career and college career – so as long as he continued getting better and someone gave him a chance, he was going to be ok.