Boldin still in Cardinals’ long-term future?

Cardinals’ GM Rod Graves says that he still views Anquan Boldin as a core player and would like to extend his contract.

Anquan BoldinAs reported by SI.com this week, the Cardinals would like to re-sign Boldin for less than the $10 million a year average they are paying Larry Fitzgerald. The team wants to stay in the $7 million to $9 million range, depending on how the contract is structured.

After the Super Bowl, Boldin backed away from a vow to never re-sign with the team, which the club viewed as a positive sign.

For now, the Cardinals are maintaining their stance of not trading Boldin, but that could change if talks with his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, go nowhere over the next month.

“We still recognize him (Boldin) as a core player and one that we would like to extend,” General Manager Rod Graves said, “but I think we have to remain open at all times to possibilities. To this point, we have not made any considerations for a trade, and we’re focused primarily on trying to make this relationship beneficial for our team.”

Rosenhaus declined to comment on the negotiations but did say that he and Boldin recently had positive talks with the Cardinals.

This situation seems to be changing week by week. First it looked like there would be no hope of Boldin staying in Arizona, now it looks like there’s no way the Cards will trade him. Either Boldin was told to play along so the Cards will have an easier time trying to find a trade partner, or his stance really has changed and he wants to remain in ‘Zona.

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Warner expected to re-sign with Cards soon

Kurt Warner and his agent must have read my latest column because apparently the free agent quarterback is on the verge of re-signing with the Arizona Cardinals according to ESPN.com. If the deal is completed, Warner is expected to receive $23 million over the next two years.

On Monday I speculated that Warner wouldn’t re-up with the Cards after making a free agent stop in San Francisco to talk with the 49ers. I concluded that with the departure of Todd Haley and the eventual/possible trade of Anquan Boldin, Warner might soon jettison as well.

Uh, not so much.


Read the rest after the jump...

Anquan Boldin having a change of heart?

Anquan BoldinAccording to Rotoworld.com (via ProFootballTalk), Anquan Boldin is willing to stay in Arizona for the right price.

Teammate Larry Fitzgerald owns the market with a four-year $40M deal, and Boldin probably won’t settle for much less. The Cards are eying deals with free agent Kurt Warner and franchise player Karlos Dansby. Darnell Dockett and Adrian Wilson also want raises, so it’s unclear if the club can fit Boldin in. Still, Boldin’s about-face shows that Arizona holds all the cards.

I would take this rumor with a grain of salt because ProFootballTalk can be hit and miss with its reports. Everything comes from unnamed “league sources.”

But let’s play along anyway.

Boldin could have realized that the Cardinals had no trade leverage if he continued to squawk about how the situation was irreparable in Arizona. So he decides to play it cool and maybe both he and the team can get what they want in the end.

Or maybe he really is willing to return to the dessert at the right price. Either way, this situation is only starting to get interesting.

Report: Eagles, Giants front runners for Boldin

Anquan BoldinIf the Cardinals indeed trade disgruntled wideout Anquan Boldin this offseason, the Eagles and Giants are apparently the front-runners for his services according to ESPN’s John Clayton.

With the compensation for Boldin being first and third round picks, the Eagles appear to have a slight edge on the G-Men. Philly has two first round picks (Nos. 21 and 28), while New York is set to select at No. 29.

Boldin would be a great fit for the Eagles, who love to throw the ball yet haven’t had a legitimate No. 1 receiver since the Terrell Owens experiment failed a couple years ago. DeSean Jackson had a breakthrough performance as a rookie last season, flashing extraordinary speed and playmaking ability. If Philly can acquire Boldin, it would only seem to enhance what Jackson brings to the field.

If the Eagles do land Boldin and can sign him to a long-term deal, it would seem logical that they would re-sign quarterback Donovan McNabb to another multi-year deal. It wouldn’t make much sense to part with multiple draft picks and commit an exorbitant amount of money to Boldin, only to turn around and hand the keys to the offense to an inexperienced Kevin Kolb. This is just speculation at this point, but one would have to assume that the Eagles would want McNabb running the offense if Boldin does come aboard.

Boldin to agent: Don’t accept any contract offer from the Cardinals

Disgruntled wide receiver Anquan Boldin reportedly told his agent Drew Rosenhaus not to accept any contract offer the Cardinals make him this offseason.

Anquan BoldinAfter watching Anquan Boldin talk at the Pro Bowl yesterday, it sounded like he wasn’t quite as steadfast in his thoughts he didn’t want to be in Arizona. Apparently, I was wrong, and Q was just doing it for the cameras. Because XTRA’s Mike Jurecki, who said he talked to Boldin over the weekend, said Boldin instructed his agent to tell the Cards he would not sign any new contract (the Cards are expected to still make a new proposal) and that he wants to be traded.

I guess it really shouldn’t be a shock. Agent Drew Rosenhaus was spotted outside the team’s Tempe facility today so I would guess he relayed a handful of news to the team. Profootballtalk.com already reported the team was told Edgerrin James — another Rosenhaus client — was asking to be released ASAP. Oh, and Rosenhaus also represents Darnell Dockett, so I wouldn’t be shocked if Darnell’s contract status was brought up.

But it is the Boldin situation that will be front and center. Again, he is under contract for two more years, so if he declines to sign any new deal, the Cards could just hang on to him and not trade him. Boldin’s only recourse will be to disappear for the entirety of the offseason — not a great deal with a new offensive coordinator coming in. We’ll see how it develops.

Here’s what would be smart. Boldin wants out and it doesn’t look like the Cards can do anything about it. So Arizona needs to go to Boldin, tell him to shut his mouth and play along until they can deal him. He’s not doing the team or himself any favors by repeatedly reporting that he’s done in Arizona and wants to be traded. The least he can do is be quiet so the Cardinals can get max value for him in a deal.

Either way, Anquan Boldin’s time in Arizona looks like it’s up.

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