Anquan Boldin wants to make sure every catch he makes this year counts for something big. And we're not just talking about points for Fantasy owners -- although those would be nice -- but Boldin has loftier goals in mind.
Boldin is sponsoring a program called "Catches For a Cause," where people can donate money so every catch he makes -- $500 or $100 for each touchdown and $50 for each reception -- go toward helping underprivileged kids. The program is geared toward children in Florida, Arizona and Baltimore, where Boldin has ties.
"It's a unique way for fans to get involved," Boldin said in a phone interview Wednesday as he prepares for his Ravens debut against the Jets on Monday night. "There is a lot of interest. A lot of people are willing to help."
Boldin's main goal is to build a youth facility in Pahokee, Fla., his home town. He wants it to be a multi-purpose center where kids can focus on school work, receive tutoring and do extra-curricular activities as well as sports. He's already donated the land, and now he's working on continued fund-raising.
Boldin also plans to get heavily involved in the community in Baltimore -- "anywhere there's a need," he said -- since that's his new home. And he wants to make an impact on the field as well.
He's thrilled with what the Ravens have done to build their offense, especially in the passing game. Not only did Baltimore bring in Boldin from Arizona, but the Ravens were able to keep Derrick Mason and recently added T.J. Houshmandzadeh after he was released by Seattle.
"Everybody knows what he brings to the table," Boldin said about Houshmandzadeh. "He's a guy who puts up numbers. He's another weapon."
Boldin isn't concerned about Houshmandzadeh taking away targets. He said Houshmandzadeh will help Boldin succeed.
He doesn't know how teams are going to stop the Ravens and quarterback Joe Flacco, who has a plethora of talent around him.
"We're going to give defense fits," he said. "No team has three No. 1 defensive backs. But we have three No. 1 wide receivers."
Boldin's first game with the Jets, however, could be a tough one since the Jets were able to reach a contract extension with cornerback Darrelle Revis in time for Week 1. Boldin expects to see a lot of Revis in this game.
"I'm happy to see him get the deal done," Boldin said. "We look forward to the challenge. It will be a challenge for us as a unit. I think we'll be OK."
In 2009, Revis helped shut down some talented wide receivers, including Andre Johnson, Randy Moss, Marques Colston, Terrell Owens, Steve Smith of the Panthers, Reggie Wayne and Chad Ochocinco. Boldin said Revis will "probably" be the best cornerback he has faced in his career.
Boldin said his goal for Monday night is "just to win," and he's not worried about his stats.
"I don't worry about my catches or things like that," Boldin said. "As long as I'm doing my job those things will come."
We're not expecting a big game from Boldin in Week 1, but one week doesn't make a season. He's in line for an outstanding year in Baltimore, and he should continue to play at a high level.
And with every catch Boldin makes, he will be doing something good for the community -- as well as Fantasy owners. It appears like when Boldin plays well, everyone benefits.
For more on the Catches For a Cause program and to make a donation you can visit Boldin's website at anquanq81foundation.com