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NFL notebook: Ravens send Boldin to 49ers

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The Ravens' Anquan Boldin catches a pass in front of the 49ers' Chris Culliver (center) and Dashon Goldson during Super Bowl XLVII on Feb. 3, 2013, in New Orleans. The Ravens traded Boldin to the 49ers on Monday.

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Goodell wants lighter helmets, sensors

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell imagines a day when players could be checked to determine whether their genetic makeup makes them more likely to develop brain disease.

He also envisions players being required to wear helmets containing sensors to detect hits that cause concussions. Those helmets might be lighter and “less of a weapon” than today's.

Those are the kinds of advances the NFL and General Electric are hoping to produce in a partnership that could funnel up to $60 million over four years to research on head injuries.

Goodell said Monday concussion lawsuits brought by thousands of ex-players had “no impact” on such efforts.

— AP

By The Associated Press
Monday, March 11, 2013, 10:03 p.m.

On the eve of NFL free agency, trades involving top receivers Anquan Boldin and Percy Harvin grabbed the headlines.

In an odd twist Monday, Boldin went from the Ravens to the San Francisco 49ers, the team he helped Baltimore beat, 34-31, in last month's Super Bowl.

Harvin, who expressed his discontent in Minnesota, was sent to Seattle, where he will join former Vikings teammate Sidney Rice.

San Francisco acquired the 32-year-old Boldin for a sixth-round draft pick. Boldin must pass a physical to complete the deal.

Boldin had six catches for 104 yards and a touchdown in the Ravens' Super Bowl win. He had said he would consider retirement rather than leave Baltimore. But going to the NFC champions might change his mind.

The 24-year-old Harvin will join the Seahawks for a package of draft picks that includes Seattle's first-round selection next month, No. 25 overall. He also must pass a physical.

Minnesota will also get Seattle's seventh-round pick this year and third-round selection in 2014.

Harvin was producing at an All-Pro level until badly spraining his left ankle last Nov. 4 at Seattle. He was placed on injured reserve a month later. He led the NFL in total yards at the time of his injury.

Harvin, who also has suffered from migraines, will enter the fifth and final season of his rookie deal with a $2.9 million salary that's well under market value — unless the Seahawks rework it.

Also Monday:

• The Giants are allowing Victor Cruz to enter restricted free agency, placing a first-round tender on the wide receiver.

Team owner John Mara said the Giants will risk having Cruz agree to a contract with another club. New York has the right to match any offer. If the Giants allow him to leave, they will get a first-round draft choice as compensation.

The tender is worth $2.879 million for 2012 for Cruz, who hasn't made half of that in his three pro seasons.

• The Redskins cut cornerback DeAngelo Hall, a casualty of the team's NFL-imposed salary-cap penalty. Washington is over the cap because of an $18 million sanction for the way it structured contracts during the 2010 uncapped season.

Hall had two years remaining on the six-year, $54 million deal and was due to make $7.5 million in salary in 2013.

• The Broncos released nine-year veteran linebacker D.J. Williams, freeing up his $6 million salary in 2013 for other needs.

Williams missed nine games while serving a pair of NFL-mandated suspensions last season.

• The Jets signed quarterback David Garrard to back up starter Mark Sanchez.

Garrard hasn't played in the NFL since 2010. He started 76 games in nine seasons with Jacksonville and played in the 2009 Pro Bowl.

• The Cardinals released running back Beanie Wells after four injury-plagued seasons.

Wells eclipsed 1,000 yards and scored 10 touchdowns in 2011 but was limited to eight games last season due to turf toe.

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