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#pounditSaturday, April 13, 2024

Anquan Boldin: NFL offseason programs are for ‘babysitting’ players

Now that Anquan Boldin is no longer looking for a job in the NFL, he can speak more freely about some of the issues he had with the league while he was playing. One of those had to do with offseason training programs.

Later in his career, Boldin chose to work out on his own rather than taking part in organized team activities. In an appearance on Evan Cohen’s ESPN West Palm Radio show Monday, Boldin explained his motivation behind that.

“NFL offseason programs aren’t designed to keep people in shape. It’s more of a babysitting factor,” he said. “They want to make sure that guys are there, that guys are visible around the building. They want to make sure that guys aren’t getting in trouble. They want to have guys there physically, that they can keep an eye on them.”

With all the rules in place now about what players can and can’t do during team-sponsored training sessions, Boldin said he felt he could push himself harder by working out on his own.

“A lot of times players don’t train the same way when they are with their team because the team is concerned about guys getting hurt in the offseason,” he said. “When I’m with my trainer here, we go at it. We go all out. That’s why, during the latter part of my career, I turned down going to offseason programs and stayed home to train.”

It’s hard to argue with the results. Boldin played through his 36th birthday and missed just two games over the final four seasons of his career. He also continued to play a significant role, putting together back-to-back years of over 1,000 yards with the San Francisco 49ers in 2013 and 2014 and catching over 60 passes the two seasons after that.

There’s no question Boldin could still contribute, but he says he is focusing his passion elsewhere now.

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