Super Blog

Live dispatches from Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa

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Anquan Boldin
Anquan Boldin is a great competitor, not a prima donna.
Paul Spinelli/Getty Images

By Ross Tucker, SI.com

I have played with and against enough prima donna wide receivers to spot one when I see one. And I can unequivocally say that, based upon my observations, Anquan Boldin is not one.

Star receivers are typically among the most selfish players on an NFL roster, and maybe for good reason. They are completely reliant on a host of other players getting their job done in order to showcase their skills. That prevents them from feeling like they have a lot of control over their production, which is the key to their compensation.

I have played with receivers that were furious during a blowout win because they didn't feel like they got the ball enough. I have also played with wideouts that were so obsessed with their individual numbers, they were very jealous when their counterpart on the other side made more plays.

Anquan Boldin is not a self-centered player. He made one statement during training camp announcing his dissatisfaction with his contract and then moved on. Can you imagine Terrell Owens being able to let the fact that he was making a quarter of his fellow receiver's salary go?

His public sideline spat with Arizona offensive coordinator Todd Haley in the NFC Championship Game looked to me like a competitor wanting to be on the field helping his team win in some way, not a me-first ball hog whining about his touches. Boldin has been on record as saying that he considers himself a football player and that he is only a receiver because they need to categorize him somehow. He is an outstanding blocker. He has no problem being a decoy. He just wanted to be on the field contributing rather than on the sideline watching, and there is no harm in that.

Check SI.com's Super Blog regularly for more dispatches from Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa.

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