The heart and soul of the Arizona Cardinals just left for Baltimore! As a Cardinals fan since they first came to the valley of the sun, I am deeply saddened by the news that Anquan Boldin, or Q as the team calls him, has just been traded to the Baltimore Ravens. The trade was reported on Foxsports.com. Anquan has been more than just a number two receiver for the Cardinals. He has been an emotional leader and a guy who plays his heart out every week. In addition to his sweet hands that pull down pro bowl numbers, as a receiver the guy throws great blocks for his teammates and I have never seen him quit on a play.
Anquan may be most famous for a nasty shot he took that literally shattered his face in a meaningless drive in a game they could not win. He went up for a pass that left him vulnerable to the bone crunching hit from New York Jets Safety, Eric Smith. In addition to knocking him out cold the hit required surgery to repair Boldin’s sinus and also required wires to put his jaw back together. A lesser man would have been out for the season but he was back on the field 3 weeks later to take on Carolina. The hit was so devastating that Kurt Warner briefly considered retirement shortly after it happened, as reported by the Associated Press.
Anquan has taken some flak for being a troublemaker and an unhappy camper with the team. But the truth of the matter is he shows up for every game. His problems began when management reneged on a promise to rework his contract and instead told him he was obligated to play for the money he had agreed too. Many people have a hard time coming up with sympathy for a guy who is making millions of dollars a year to play a game. But the truth of the matter is the Cardinals were seriously underpaying this guy for everything he gave to the team. Larry Fitzgerald the stand out wide receiver for the Cardinals credits Boldin for helping him improve the one weak spot in his game yards after the catch. And the improvement was measurable after Boldin began working with him. The other young receivers also credit Boldin with helping them in their games.
As a fan I have watched Boldin throw blocks and run screens unheralded for years helping his team gain extra yards and making the cardinals offense just a little more potent. He is a clutch receiver whether it is 3 and 8 in the playoffs or 1st and 10 in a pre season game. He is just one of those guys that goes all out all the time.
As a fan of the Cardinals I will miss him greatly. As a fan of the NFL and Anquan Boldin I hope Joe Flacco and the Ravens realize what a great deal they just got. Look out AFC the Ravens just picked up a potent new weapon and a guy that will make one of the toughest teams in the NFL just a little bit tougher.