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First Person

Anquan Boldin, Cardinals Wide Receiver

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Anquan Boldin
Anquan Boldin, Cardinals Wide Receiver
Jason Wise/SI

As told to Michael Silver

ON GROWING UP IN PAHOKEE, FLA. My parents were big on academics -- my mom is a first-grade teacher and my dad, who used to work in the mills, coaches high school track and basketball. I have a brother [Carl Jr.] who's three years older than I am and a sister [Shenitric] who's two years older than him. I would have to do my homework and my older brother's homework, and he'd have to do my sister's homework. They would make up extra homework for her. It was crazy, but good. It put me ahead in everything.

ON WHETHER HE'LL EMPLOY A SIMILAR APPROACH WITH HIS SON, 14-MONTH-OLD ANQUAN JR. Probably. His mother and I have him watching all kinds of Baby Einstein tapes, and he only watches kids' shows that are educational. It seems to be working -- he already knows most of his body parts. His mom [Dionne Ewan] was a psychology major at Florida State, so she's up on all the cutting-edge techniques.

ON HELPING OTHERS I have a foundation [called Q81] which helps underprivileged kids, a situation that is near and dear to me. There weren't a lot of opportunities where I came from. The big thing I try to show them is hope.

ON HURRICANE KATRINA AND THE GOVERNMENT'S RESPONSE TO THE CRISIS It had to get to you how long it took. If you see the way people have suffered and lost everything, you want to do anything you can to help. It has affected a lot of my friends in the NFL community -- Javon Walker [of the Packers] didn't find his grandma for a couple of days, and Talman Gardner [formerly of the Saints] lost everything. I went to the Coliseum [in Phoenix], where they had one of the shelters, and helped serve food. It was just heartbreaking.

ON GETTING PAID I finally got my [contract extension] done at the start of training camp, but my friend Javon Walker didn't, and now that he tore his ACL, it's very frustrating to me. You've got to get it while you can in this league, because this business is cutthroat. If you get hurt, they look for the next guy.

ON THE CARDINALS' EARLY-SEASON STRUGGLES My thoughts about us haven't changed -- I still think we're a great team. We had some injuries on the offensive line, and that cost us. But it's only a matter of time before we start to click, and when we do, it's going to get ugly for everyone else.


Issue date: September 24, 2005