Still a free agent, the likelihood of an Anquan Boldin reunion in Motown isn’t as implausible as most would assume.
Things are looking very positive for the Detroit Lions’ wide receiver unit as a whole without Anquan Boldin, but a lot could change. There is plenty of room for optimism. Unfortunately, the Lions would be behind the eight-ball if wide receivers Golden Tate and Marvin Jones Jr. suffered an injury.
Rookie Kenny Golladay, a third round pick out of Northern Illinois from this years draft is promising. Jace Billingsley, last years practice squad phenom is turning heads. Jared Abbrederis is this years OTA all-star. Ryan Spadola, Keshawn Martin and TJ Jones have been awfully quiet.
All are unconvincing or unproven commodities to say the least and sometimes unreliable from a health standpoint. It doesn’t help the tight ends are dropping passes left and right either.
Boldin is unquestionably the only free-agent receiver worth signing at this point. Entering his 15th season, the timetable of his career is all but nearly expired. This makes him a perfect short-term signing.
The return on what would be a very cap friendly deal also makes it a no-brainer to re-sign him. Familiarity with the playbook and developed chemistry with quarterback Matthew Stafford is an added bonus.
Ultimately, Boldin’s goal is to play in or around his home-state of Florida according to the Detroit Free Press. No talks have happened between either side recently.
"“We’ve had some communication with Anquan,” Lions general manager Bob Quinn told the Detroit Free Press. “That was back in I’d say March, so really no update on our end of things. I know they said he’s been communicating with a couple other teams, but nothing to update. Door’s open.”"
No team has had cause to sign Boldin as of yet. Waiting for an injury or poor play from the receiving core is too risky. Re-signing Boldin also means the top three wide receivers would return.
The Lions would also be bringing back their receiving touchdown leader of eight grabs to boot. No one can deny his leadership skills and ability to move the chains.
Pro Football Focus certainly further quantifies his value, giving him the 9th best WR rating in the NFL last season along with other compelling statistics. Having Boldin on the team would ease some of pressure on Golladay and the other young receivers, allowing them time to develop at a more steady pace. The depth of the core would be more solidified as well.
Neither party is reaching out to the other. If the Lions were smart and learned anything from the lucky…I mean magical season they had in 2016, the time is now to capitalize on him still being a free agent before their luck runs out.