In the midst of talk that tight end Greg Olsen may not be a fit in Mike Martz’s offense, we’re throwing out a potential trade that could work for both teams: Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Anquan Boldin for Olsen, straight up.
This trade makes sense for a lot of reasons. Both teams would fill a need while not taking much away from the position from which they’re trading. The Bears would get their number one wide receiver while the Cardinals get the game-breaking tight end they’ve lacked for years. Veterans Desmond Clark, Kellen Davis and a free agent (maybe the rumored Brandon Manumaleuna) would fill in nicely in Martz’s offense while Steve Breaston would step into the starter’s role he’s been ready for.
The Cardinals have been rumored to be looking for a second round draft pick in return for Boldin (which the Bears offered to Arizona for Boldin on draft day in 2009) and while Olsen did not meet expectations in 2009, he is still a talented tight end that many opposing defenses had to gameplan for last season. Olsen probably matches the value of a second round draft pick, as many teams around the league would be willing to ship a second rounder for him, no less, no more.
Boldin would bring exceptional route-running skills to an offense that predicates itself on precise route-running, not to mention his solid hands and good size. He’d be a great complement to the Bears’ speedy receivers Devin Hester, Johnny Knox and Devin Aromashadu.
What could be a tipping point in this potential trade is the financial implications. Boldin is due a fat contract after the 2010 season, when he is scheduled to become a free agent. He will command around $10 million/year for at least four years, while Olsen has two years left on a five-year, $8 million contract that expires after the 2011 season. Olsen will get a big contract of his own, but probably in the $5 million range – half of what Boldin will cost. Also keep in mind the fact that Angelo has denied any efforts to trade Olsen, but he did not go so far as to say he wouldn’t field offers for him.
So while this potential trade has it tipping points, it’s a discussion Angelo and Cardinals general manager Rod Graves should at least have.
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