Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert
From time to time, we like to link to the work of people who are much smarter than the rest of us and thus offer a unique angle for one of our conversations.
Friday, we discussed the potential availability of Arizona receiver Anquan Boldin. So Black and Blue fans who have been pining for Boldin should at least take a look at these two studies related to the performance of NFL receivers at mid-career.
The first is from our friends at Football Outsiders, who studied every significant swap of veteran receivers since the 1979 season. The study boiled down to 26 players -- 10 of them (38 percent) produced at a lower rate than the player they were brought in to replace. Here is Bill Barnwell's conclusion:
"While there are mitigating factors that affect all these statistics, there is enough negative data to indicate that adding an excellent wide receiver is anything but a surefire upgrade."
Meanwhile, Doug Drinen of Pro Football Reference performed an exhaustive study to determine when players start getting "old" from a production standpoint at each position. The research is from earlier in the decade, but it's still worth taking a look at.
Drinen found the wheelhouse for receiver production to be between the ages of 24 and 29. After turning 30, almost three-fourths of all receivers see their production decline.
Boldin turns 29 in October. Discuss among yourselves, and we'll be back with you shortly.
Six hours to go!