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49ers' Anquan Boldin ready to face Buccaneers' secondary

  • San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Anquan Boldin will be challenged by Darrelle Revis and Dashon Goldson this weekend. (MARCIO JOSE SANCHEZ / Associated Press)

SANTA CLARA — Anquan Boldin isn't cowering over the prospect of getting hit Sunday in Tampa when the 49ers oppose their former safety, Dashon Goldson.

“He's a guy that can bring it,” Boldin said Thursday, “but as a receiver, you don't worry about that stuff. If you get hit, you get hit, then just find them on a running play.”

Boldin's tenacious approach has impressively shown up in recent wins over the St. Louis Rams and Seattle Seahawks. After each game, he talked about welcoming any and all physical challenges. Goldson certainly will offer that, too. His penchant for hard hits already has earned him a one-game suspension this season.

Boldin praised Goldson as a physical, smart player, and their familiarity dates back to Boldin's NFC West days with the Arizona Cardinals and the previous two seasons with the Baltimore Ravens.

But Goldson isn't the most high-profile player in the Buccaneers secondary. That would be Darrelle Revis, whom Boldin faced a few times when Revis was with the Jets.

Boldin had mixed results in those matchups: seven receptions for 110 yards in the 2010 opener, but only one catch for 28 yards in a 2011 meeting, As expected, Boldin is the 49ers' leading receiver (67 catches, 915 yards, five touchdowns) while they work Michael Crabtree back into the mix. Despite the passing game's recent strides, it ranks last in yards per game and Boldin notes there's “a lot of room for improvement.”

Two games into his comeback from Achilles surgery, Crabtree was limited in practice Wednesday with an ankle issue that offensive coordinator Greg Roman said is not related to the Achilles tear.

Getting that Boldin-Crabtree tandem up to elite status will be a key for the 49ers (9-4) heading into the playoffs, assuming they indeed clinch a berth, which they can do as early as Sunday.

“You're always evaluating that part of it as a coach, trying to see what players do what best, trying to put guys in different situations to take advantage of different matchups,” Boldin said.“That's an ongoing process.”

With 85 yards against the Buccaneers, Boldin would reach the 1,000-yard mark for a sixth season. He is tied for first in the NFL with 27 third-down receptions (for 400 yards).Roman said Kaepernick is doing his part, that's he's “played extremely well” both last year and this year. “He's a star on the rise,” Roman added of Kaepernick.

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