The way the Cardinals tell it, they haven't just this week decided to listen to trade offers for receiver Anquan Boldin. They just decided to tell the world they are listening.
Why? Well, they appear to be tiring of the unhappy act they keep getting from Boldin and agent Drew Rosenhaus. Boldin is signed for two more seasons -- at a total of $5.75 million -- but puts his uniform pants on one leg at a time next to Larry Fitzgerald, who makes $10 million a season.
As the coach and general manager point out in the story from the Arizona Republic, their preference is to keep Boldin, but recognize that making him happy might not be possible.
The team has more pressing contract extensions to complete with linebacker Karlos Dansby and strong safety Adrian Wilson, and just shelled out a $15 million signing bonus to quarterback Kurt Warner. Even if the Cards wanted to make Boldin a very rich man, they might not have the cash lying around. Or so they intimate.
What would it cost for another team to lift Boldin from the Cards? He turns 29 in October and has something of an injury history, playing a full 16-game schedule just twice in his six NFL seasons. Last year, if it matters, he also criticized the team and the coach and got into a sideline squabble with the offensive coordinator during the conference championship game against the Eagles, and departed the stadium before celebrating with his teammates. Perhaps that's all a product of the contract unhappiness and would disappear in a new setting with a new deal. Perhaps.
What would it cost? Beat writer Kent Somers, who is very plugged in out there, guesstimated in his blog that a first-round and a third-round pick would probably satisfy the Cardinals. Taking that at face value, would the Eagles make that deal? They hold two first-round picks and 12 draft picks overall, and fully admit they don't intend to use all those picks themselves.
If they did make the trade, they would have to do the contract upgrade, putting Boldin in that 4-year/$40 million range he's seeking. That could have a domino effect on the contract status of Donovan McNabb, who also has two years left on his deal and might think he'd be in line for a bump from the organization before an outsider gets one.
So, do you make the deal for a first and a third to get Boldin? Your thoughts.