Boldin: coaching staff 'not man enough'
CHICAGO - The Cardinals returned home Sunday with another road victory, the division lead and one miserable receiver.
Anquan Boldin was among the team's eight inactive players, and he said no one was "man enough" to tell him he wasn't playing. Boldin said he found out before the game when he returned to locker room from testing his injured right ankle and found his gear had been removed from his locker.
"I'd have probably felt better if somebody would have been man enough and walked up to me and told me what the situation was," he said, "but I had to walk back in the locker room and find all of my stuff gone."
Coach Ken Whisenhunt disputed that version of events. He said he turned in the list of inactive players to officials just before the deadline, which is 90 minutes before the game.
After that meeting, Whisenhunt said he approached Boldin at the player's locker and told him he wasn't playing.
"I put his name down right before that 10:30 deadline," Whisenhunt said. "I was torn right up until that. He (Boldin) was still out on the field."
Two witnesses to Whisenhunt's conversation with Boldin said the receiver would not look at the coach during the conversation. One Cardinals veteran expressed surprise that Boldin would complain about the issue after a victory.
Over the past two seasons, the Cardinals are 5-1 in the games Boldin has missed.
The dispute Sunday probably can be blamed on timing.<p>Boldin said he "felt the best I have in three weeks" in pregame warm-ups, and wanted to play. Whisenhunt said a team equipment man probably saw the inactive list before Boldin because the receiver was still on the field. That's likely why the equipment was removed before Whisenhunt had a chance to talk to the receiver.
Boldin has been playing with a high-ankle sprain for three weeks, and Whisenhunt said he decided to deactivate Boldin, partly because the turf at Soldier Field was loose and uneven.