2012 Players To Watch: Anquan Boldin

EAST RUTHERFORD NJ - SEPTEMBER 13: Anquan Boldin #81 of the Baltimore Ravens catches a pass over Kyle Wilson #20 of the New York Jets during their home opener at the New Meadowlands Stadium on September 13 2010 in East Rutherford New Jersey. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Anquan Boldin was brought in via a trade with the Arizona Cardinals to be the Baltimore Ravens number one option in the receiving core. So far, although he has been a viable option in the receiving game, he has not been the game breaking receiver that the team hoped he would be.

In Arizona Boldin was part of a deadly receiving duo with all pro receiver Larry Fitzgerald. Boldin was even a force to be reckoned with before the arrival of Fitzgerald to the Cardinals. In his first game with the Cards, Boldin set the rookie receiving record with over 10 catches for over 200 yards. A record that still stands today. He had five 1,000 yard season in the seven he spent in Arizona but has yet to break the 1,000 yard mark here in Baltimore

It could be that quarterback Joe Flacco just does not have the natural chemistry with Anquan that Kurt Warner did with the Cardinals. Or, It could be that Boldin just does not fit into the offensive system of offensive coordinator Cam Cameron. Cameron's system employes multiple deep threats and a strong physical slot receiver that can own the middle of the field. In the past few years, since the Ravens had no better options, Boldin has been asked to play as one of the outside targets but has had trouble creating separation in the secondary.

In Arizona he was used mostly in the slot where he was able to thrive while out-muscling smaller nickle backs and safeties. It seems that this would be where he would fit the best here in Baltimore as well. So far in the off season the Baltimore Ravens have been looking for another vertical threat receiver to pair with second year play-maker Torrey Smith. With several options already in camp the possibility of Anquan moving back to the slot for 2012 seems more and more realistic.

This could mean a major boost for the Ravens passing game this season. A boost they may dearly need with the possibility of a drop off in the teams defensive production due to so many new faces in the starting line up.

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