As the NFL Draft looms on the horizon, one of the biggest names being floated around in trade rumors is that of disgruntled Arizona Cardinals receiver Anquan Boldin.
Boldin, one of the elite wide-outs in the NFL, has been displeased with the team, and more importantly the front office for, as he sees it, not following through offering him a new contract, though they allegedly promised him one.
He has vowed to not resign with the team when his contract runs out in two years.
So, that leaves the Cardinals brass with two options:
One, let him play out his remaining time, because although he was unhappy last season, he still put together a Pro Bowl worthy effort.
I like that. That’s rare nowadays in professional sports, an athlete, especially one who is unhappy, actually honoring his contract and playing to the best of his ability.
Or the second option, the more likely of the two, is to trade the talented receiver, and I’ve heard buzz about four teams that are champing at the bit to get him, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Miami, and the New York Giants.
Let’s look closer at these teams and their chances of becoming the next prospective home for Boldin, shall we?
Philadelphia:The Eagles are desperate to finally have a dominant receiver. Their brief love affair with TO ended over his attacking the Philly front office and beloved QB Donovan McNabb in the media, and he was released to become someone else’s headache.
The Eagles have a lot of picks in this draft, and would just love to give up some of them for Boldin. Conventional wisdom says it would take at least three picks (a first, and probably a third and fifth rounder). The Eagles have several picks in that fifth round, so this seems to be a good trade-off for both teams.
Baltimore: The Ravens need a number one receiver, plain and simple. Joe Flacco outperformed all expectations that were put on his last season, and led the Ravens to the playoffs. However, their receiving corps was extremely underutilized, mainly because there was no dominant force for Flacco to throw to.
Derrick Mason is good, don’t get me wrong, he did go for over 1,000 yards last season, but he’s a second receiver at best. Boldin would fill the void for a marquee guy, and the Ravens would finally have an offense that didn’t need to revolve around the run quite as often.
Baltimore has the necessary picks, but the three that they would likely need to land Boldin would eat up a majority of them. It could still happen though.
Miami: Seeing Boldin in aqua would be an interesting sight, and I think that it is the least likely of the four teams. Miami’s got the picks to spare, but I just don’t see Boldin as a Dolphin.
New York Giants: This could be an interesting fit. Arizona and New York aren’t exactly bitter rivals, but the games between the two, especially with Kurt Warner at QB for the Cards, makes this situation a little bit more fun.
The Giants are in desperate need of a marquee receiver, having released one-man PR disaster Plaxico Burress, and have been hot on the trail of Cleveland’s Braylon Edwards. Boldin would be a much better choice, and he’d probably love the media frenzy that comes along with playing in New York. The G-Men have a ton of picks in this draft, and are not likely to balk at a demand for a few of them if it means landing a guy like Boldin.
Overall, if I had to hazard a guess as to what uniform Boldin will be wearing come training camp, I’ll say this:
Welcome to New York, Mr. Boldin.