Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Instant Analysis: Anquan Boldin traded to the 49ers


It’s punch, counter-punch today in the NFC West as the 49ers have swung a deal with the Ravens to acquire Anquan Boldin in exchange for a sixth round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. As with the trade of Harvin to Seattle, this moves creates a ripple effect in dynasty leagues. Let’s take a look at the key players whose values need to be reviewed after this move:

Anquan Boldin, WR SF

Boldin is a physical, no nonsense player who fits perfectly within the scheme and philosophy of the “other” Harbaugh’s team. There’s no question he’ll add elements of toughness, leadership and physicality to the San Francisco locker room and on the field.

As far as his dynasty value, this really doesn’t change too much. Boldin is likely going to be the third option at best in the passing attack behind Michael Crabtree and Vernon Davis. He’ll be a player targeted on third downs and in the red zone as well. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Boldin post a season with 50-60 catches, 750 yards and a handful of touchdowns. If you have an owner in your league who expects more than that, it’s time to trade Boldin and get something while you can as this will not be the vintage Boldin from his days in Arizona.
  Michael Crabtree, WR SF

Crabtree really broke out this season and the move really should do nothing but help him. While Boldin can’t create separation like he once did, he’s still a legitimate receiving threat and won’t be a decoy like Randy Moss was for most of the season. Crabtree is knocking at the door of finally fulfilling his potential.

Vernon Davis, TE SF

It’s easy to look at this move and think it could be bad news for Davis since Boldin could take away some red zone opportunities. However, Davis’ value is already in the abyss after a bit of a lost season last year. If the 49ers want to take advantage of his talent, they’ll find a way to do so.  I wouldn’t be downgrading Davis at all.

Colin Kaepernick, QB SF

As if the 49ers hadn’t done enough to put him in the best position to succeed, this just seals the deal. With Alex Smith out of the way and an offense that features Crabtree, Boldin, Davis, Frank Gore and a host of others, Kaepernick will be a chic breakthrough pick for QB1 status in dynasty leagues next season.

Joe Flacco, QB BAL

The Ravens paid the man, but didn’t give him everything he wanted. Flacco was said to be lobbying hard for Anquan to stay, but it wasn’t meant to be. You can’t like this for his dynasty value as Boldin bailed him out of some bad spots in the past. It will be very interesting to see how the Ravens respond in free agency and the draft.

AJ Jenkins, WR SF

He’s been the forgotten receiver in the 49ers corps, but don’t forget about him. Boldin won’t be around for long and Jenkins has a chance to really emerge over the next year or so. He has talent, but just couldn’t adapt to the NFL game in his rookie season.

Other Players of Note

As we said, the Ravens are a team to watch in the Draft and free agency now. Do they try to develop players like Tandon Doss and Tommy Streeter or do they make another move? As for the 49ers, this doesn’t bode well for the future of Mario Manningham.

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