Anquan Boldin trade rumors: Chiefs should explore possibilities

DETROIT.MI - NOVEMBER 24: Anquan Boldin
DETROIT.MI - NOVEMBER 24: Anquan Boldin /

There are several reasons why the Chiefs might want to at least explore what it would take to trade for Anquan Boldin.

The Buffalo Bills own the trade rights to wide receiver Anquan Boldin for the 2017 regular season, but they’re apparently prepared to waive those rights for Boldin to join another NFL team—for the right price. They’ve let Boldin’s agent, Tom Condon, know that the wide receiver and his representation are free to explore the NFL to gauge any such interest in hopes of a deal.

The addition of Anquan Boldin to any team at this point has to be considered a bit of a long shot. The player hasn’t played at all this NFL season and is already older than most other free agents still trying to find active work in the NFL. To work out something for Boldin is not only to hope the aging receiver still has something left, but that team would also have to be willing to pay something to the Bills just to find out if that’s even the case.

Of course, Boldin has been proving doubters wrong since he first came into the league, whether those who said he was originally too slow for the pros to those who doubt his age now. Just last year he had 8 touchdowns, showing he’s never lost his nose for the end zone.

For a team like the Chiefs, there are a few reasons why a move for Boldin could  make sense, certainly more so than other players:

  1. Boldin is a proven performer who would bring a veteran presence to the youngest part of the Chiefs roster. While it’s nice to allow players to grow all during the regular season and earn reps that turn them into veterans, it would also be nice to have someone with proven hands in the playoffs and such a professional approach in the film room and locker room.
  2. At this point, the Chiefs themselves as a unit seem to be tipping toward drama. Some of the on-field theatrics or attitude from players like Marcus Peters and Travis Kelce have given the Chiefs more swagger than before, but there’s a fine line between swagger and drama and Boldin could help make sure the Chiefs are staying on the right side.
  3. As good as the Chiefs look on offense this year, their red zone performance could use a boost. Alex Smith has improved on last year’s abysmal red zone completion percentage of 45% (this year, he’s at 57% through 7 games), but adding a sure-handed, physical receiver who will fight for positioning in tight spaces could take the Chiefs to that next level.
  4. Boldin would also be a hedge against any further injuries to the skill positions as the Chiefs enter the second half of the season. So far, so good, on keeping Travis Kelce, Kareem Hunt and Tyreek Hill healthy, but the Chiefs have seen Hill enter the concussion protocol already after taking heavy hits and they’ve lost secondary players like Spencer Ware and Chris Conley to serious injuries for the year. Boldin would ensure that the dropoff after the team’s top trio wasn’t a freefall.

Of course, the Chiefs have already dealt plenty of long-term assets already this offseason for Patrick Mahomes, Reggie Ragland and Cameron Erving, so it’s unlikely they want to get rid of another 2018 draft pick or beyond. But they’ve dealt with Buffalo twice already (Mahomes and Ragland trades) so perhaps the groundwork has been laid for yet another deal.