49ers acquire WR Boldin from Ravens
Here’s a Super Bowl twist: A guy who helped Baltimore beat San
Francisco for the NFL title is now poised to join the 49ers.
San Francisco acquired wide receiver Anquan Boldin from the
Ravens for a sixth-round draft pick Monday. Boldin, a star in
Baltimore’s run to the world championship last season, must pass a
physical to complete the deal.
The Ravens announced the trade Monday, prompting a disappointed
response from quarterback Joe Flacco.
”Anquan was a great receiver for myself and for our football
team,” said Flacco, who signed a six-year, $120.6 million deal
with the Ravens last week. ”It’s sad to see a guy like that go,
but at the same time you want what’s best for him and you just wish
him the best of luck.
”Anquan was a big part of this football team, a big part of
this offense. He’s one of the many reasons we won the Super Bowl
Boldin had six catches for 104 yards and a touchdown in the
Ravens’ 34-31 Super Bowl victory over the 49ers. Boldin also had
five receptions for 60 yards and two scores against New England in
the AFC title game.
But he was due $6 million in 2013, the final year of his
contract. After Boldin and the Ravens failed to agree on a
restructured deal, Baltimore worked a deal with San Francisco
rather than to simply cut him from the roster.
Boldin and former Cardinals teammate Larry Fitzgerald were in
West Africa on Monday, continuing their efforts with international
relief. Boldin was expected to remain in Africa through Thursday
and was not immediately available for comment.
But some of his former teammates had plenty to say.
”It’s a business, man. Those things are going to happen,” wide
receiver Jacoby Jones said. ”I wish Q the best. He’s always a
Raven with me, and we got something they can’t take from us.”
News of the deal came shortly before several members of the
Ravens, including Flacco and Jones, gathered to watch a screening
of a DVD documenting Baltimore’s magical 2012 season.
Boldin and guard Bobbie Williams, whose contract was terminated
last week, were featured prominently in the movie. Free agents Paul
Kruger, Ed Reed and Dannell Ellerbe may also be gone by the time
Baltimore begins training camp starts in July.
Before entering the theater, Ravens defensive end Arthur Jones
said of losing Boldin: ”That’s really unfortunate, but that’s part
of the business. Right now we’re here to celebrate the time that we
did have with him.”
The 32-year-old Boldin had said he’d consider retirement rather
than leave Baltimore. But going to the NFC champions might change
A 10-year veteran, Boldin led Baltimore with 65 catches for 921
yards and four TDs in 2012. He was sensational in the postseason,
totaling 16 receptions for 276 yards and three scores.
Boldin was also a strong voice in the locker room and a teacher
to second-year wide receiver Torrey Smith, who will likely become
Flacco’s top target in 2013.
”Definitely shocked,” Smith said of the deal. ”You lose a
great guy, a great leader. A mentor. All of that.”
Smith was more concerned about being in the huddle without
Boldin than taking over as the Ravens’ top pass-catching
”It’s not so much about football when you lose someone like
that, someone you love like a brother and would do anything for
you,” Smith said.
Boldin spent the first seven seasons of his NFL career with
Arizona, which lost the 2009 Super Bowl to Pittsburgh. In that
game, Boldin caught eight passes for 84 yards.
He came to Baltimore in a trade before the 2010 season. The team
reached the playoffs during all three of his seasons with the
”A veteran like that, you lose a lot,” Jones said. ”You learn
a lot of routes from him, moves, what he sees. He passed that on to
The Ravens knew changes were coming, so the deal didn’t come as
a total shock.
”Not necessarily surprised,” Flacco said. ”You see things
like this happen every year in the NFL. It’s just the nature of the
business. … Now we’ve got to put some faith in our young guys and
hope they step up to the table and play the way they’re capable of