Wide receiver Anquan Boldin, who was a major factor in sending the 49ers’ to a loss in Super Bowl XLVII to close last season, was chosen as the winner of the Bill Walsh Award as the team’s MVP.
Boldin, acquired in an offseason trade from the Baltimore Ravens for a sixth-round draft pick, led the 49ers with 85 receptions for 1,179 yards and seven touchdowns. Boldin also provided the 49ers with veteran leadership in the locker room.
After signing quarterback Joe Flacco to a lucrative contract extension, the Ravens determined they could not afford Boldin’s $6 million salary. Ravens coach John Harbaugh called his brother, John, to see if the 49ers would be interested in acquiring Boldin. A deal was worked out within 45 minutes.
“My brother John said, ‘You will love Anquan Boldin,’” Jim Harbaugh said. “’You will love the way he practices. He’ll take every rep. You’ll love the way he competes and plays in the game and the plays that he’ll make and the plays that he’ll make in the big games and you’ll just love being around him.’
“And, check, check, check, check. So, there’s a pretty long list.”
The Bill Walsh Award is voted on by the team’s coaches.
The 49ers announced their 2013 team awards on Friday:
Len Eshmont Award: LB NaVorro Bowman
The Len Eshmont Award is voted on by the players and is given to the 49er who best exemplifies the inspirational and courageous play of Len Eshmont, an original member of the 1946 49ers team. Eshmont, who coached at Navy and Virginia following his career in San Francisco, died in 1957. The award was established that year.
Bobb McKittrick Award: G Alex Boone
The Bobb McKittrick Award is given annually to the 49ers offensive lineman who best represents the courage, intensity and sacrifice displayed by the longtime offensive line coach, during his 21 years of service to the 49ers. The award was established by the 49ers in 1999, and is voted on by the offensive line.
Hazeltine Iron Man Award: DT Justin Smith
The Hazeltine Iron Man Award is named for former linebacker Matt Hazeltine, a 13-year performer who played more seasons at linebacker than any other 49ers player. Known for his durability and dedication, Hazeltine passed away in 1987 from ALS, and Bill Walsh established the award in his honor that year. The award is given annually to the most courageous and inspirational defensive player as voted upon by the defensive coaches.
Thomas Herrion Memorial Award: S Eric Reid
Thomas Herrion Memorial Award was established in 2005 by 49ers owners Denise and John York and is presented to a rookie or first-year player who best represents the dream of Thomas Herrion. The recipient has taken advantage of every opportunity, turned it into a positive situation and made their dream turn into a reality. The award is voted on by the coaches.
Blue Collar Players of the Year (voted on by the players and coaches)
Defense: Glenn Dorsey
Offense: Frank Gore
Special Teams: Bubba Ventrone