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Former Lions WR Anquan Boldin wants to play again

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The future Hall of Fame receiver is already looking to come out of retirement.

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

It was just a few months ago that Anquan Boldin decided to forego a season with the Buffalo Bills and end his 14-year football career. “My life’s purpose became bigger than football in August, when I decided to walk away from the game I love — a game to which I have dedicated nearly my entire life — in order to become a champion for criminal justice reform and both racial and social equality,” Boldin wrote in a lengthy article for Time this week.

But it appears he’s ready to come back to the game he loves, as ESPN has obtained a letter from the Bills allowing Boldin to seek a trade:

The NFL trade deadline is Tuesday, so if Boldin is hoping to play for a team other than the Bills, he’ll have to find a willing trade partner before then—unless he can convince the team to release him.

It’s unclear why Boldin has suddenly changed his mind, but it appears he does believe the league has made some progress in regards to social issues. “The Commissioner listened to why players were protesting and then played a key role in putting these players in touch with owners willing to listen to their concerns,” Boldin wrote. “He brought us together — and he did so in a highly charged environment and despite outside forces seeking to divide, rather than unite.”

Now that it appears Boldin will return for a 15th season, one has to wonder if the Detroit Lions are interested in bringing him back. Last year, Boldin was a huge part of the offense, hauling in 67 catches for 584 yards and eight touchdowns.

Without Boldin, the Lions have struggled to find that red zone presence that he brought to the team. The likes of Eric Ebron and Marvin Jones Jr. haven’t lived up to the hype, and with the injury status of Golden Tate and Kenny Golladay still unknown for the short-term, Boldin could certainly step in immediately and make a difference.

But are the two sides interested in reuniting? It doesn’t seem like the Lions and Boldin were ever close to making a deal happen during the offseason, and it appeared one (or both) sides had moved on.

Situations change, however, and a reunion would make a lot of sense. We’ll see if the Lions try to make a last-minute trade before Tuesday’s deadline.