In an unexpected turn of events, ESPN’s Jim Trotter is reporting that Buffalo Bills receiver Anquan Boldin, who signed with the team less than two weeks ago, is retiring from the NFL.
Boldin, who turns 37 in October, was set to begin his 15th season with the Bills, and made his first (and only) appearance with the team during the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday. He caught one pass for five yards, and was targeted on Ronald Darby’s interception of Tyrod Taylor.
There are a number of factors that could be playing into this decision. Boldin’s advancing in age, and the wear and tear of another NFL season could be more than he bargained for. He was also known to want to spend time closer to his family in Florida, although he had apparently worked that out before signing in the first place.
The obvious conclusion is that he didn’t like the moves the Bills made last week to get rid of Sammy Watkins and Ronald Darby. Boldin was known to want to play for a contender, and the Bills were already limited to fringe status even before those moves were made. The Bills aren’t likely to make a whole lot of noise in 2017, and it’s hard to blame the man for not wanting to put his body through an NFL season when it’s probably going to end after Week 17.
We’ll have more on this if anything develops.
Update (8:21 PM): Trotter also posted this statement from Boldin on his Twitter feed:
Statement from Anquan Boldin on his decision to retire: pic.twitter.com/z19jekK33R— Jim Trotter (@JimTrotter_NFL) August 21, 2017
Perhaps it’s more of a stronger personal decision than anything else.