After playing 14 seasons in the National Football League, wide receiver Anquan Boldin is walking away from the game of football. His decision comes only a couple of weeks away from the Buffalo Bills‘ season opener against the New York Jets, and leaves the team in a difficult spot.
Boldin signed with the Bills on Aug. 7 and was hoping that he could contribute for another season. But his age was obvious in Buffalo’s preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles. And apparently that struggle was going to be too much for the NFL veteran that was to be the voice of reason in the locker room for the Bills.
And, honestly, his decision to retire could not have come at a worse time for a team that is still trying to figure out what the upcoming season will bring. The Bills dealt receiver Sammy Watkins and cornerback Ronald Darby out of town, but received receiver Jordan Matthews and cornerback E.J. Gaines in return. The only problem is that both of their new players are now injured, and the proverbial wheels have fallen off the bus.
One of the reasons that Buffalo decided to part ways with the oft-injured Watkins was because Boldin was on the roster. And general manager Brandon Beane was relying on Boldin to help the team.
“Everybody’s forgetting we signed Anquan last week,” Beane said Aug. 11. “This is not a throw-in-the-towel thing at all. Somebody mentioned that somebody said that out there and that quite honestly, that’s annoying to me because you don’t know me if you think I’m throwing in the towel.
“We’ve got Anquan, who we added and I told you, I honestly believe he’s Hall of Famer and he still can play in this league. Jordan Matthews is a starting receiver and you look at his numbers, what he’s done and those aren’t to be laughed at, I guess to say. Tyrod will get every opportunity to lead this team and we’re all rooting for him. It’s in our best interest,” via ESPN.
With Boldin’s retirement, the Bills are losing a receiver that has caught 1,076 passes for 13,779 yards and 82 touchdowns in 202 career games. Those stats might be enough to get Boldin into the Hall of Fame, but that decision is years away from the present.
What does Buffalo do now to address their offensive concerns?
Who knows at this time, but they are severely banged up and quarterback Tyrod Taylor looks disastrous this preseason. He is now losing yet another player, and the Bills find themselves with a backwards momentum as they head closer to the regular season.
As a football fan, watch the Bills preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday night and see what the season has in the works. And if the team isn’t careful, talk of tanking will likely swirl around the streets of Eastern New York, which will lead to other veterans like LeSean McCoy wanting to be sent packing as well.
A mutiny might be on the way, and the beginning of the end likely started with Anquan Boldin‘s retirement on Sunday evening.