New Updated Ranked Wide Receivers Left in NFL Free Agency

Too busy watching March Madness to keep up with NFL Free Agency?

We’ve seen big names like DeMarco Murray, Jeremy Maclin, Andre Johnson, Ndamukong Suh and Darelle Revis finding homes, potential impact players like Eddie Royal, Harry Douglas and Ryan Mathews land teams, and crazy trades being pulled off like Sam Bradford for Nick Foles and Jimmy Graham for Max Unger.

And now we’ve had the first ever NFL Veteran Combine, with several under-the-radar wide receivers that may become important again.

So let Football Garbage Time give you a hand with what’s left as we rank and compile information on the top wide receivers still available in free agency!

1) Michael Crabtree

AP Photo

AP Photo

With Torrey Smith signed, Crabtree will have to move elsewhere to find targets.  And it seems that Crabtree is OK with that:

Initially, he was linked to the Vikings, Bills and the Dolphins.  There was some rumored interest in Crabtree from the Redskins and Chargers:

Unfortunately for Crabtree, nothing has developed from that interest.  Apparently, according to sources, there isn’t much of a market for Crabtree due to an increased focus on younger receivers.  However, recently, it appears that Crabtree has drawn his first actual visit:

And there’s a optimism behind this visit:

And I’ve already mentioned that I think the Raiders should take a run at him as well.  It’s surprising that he hasn’t drawn more interest, but part it might be Crabtree’s willingness to let everything play out and “to wait however long it takes to find an appealing situation for the 2015 season”.  Apparently the door is still open in San Francisco, as GM Trent Balke told the Sacremento Bee:

“As long as Michael’s out there, he’s just like any other (unrestricted free agent). You never say never. Michael did a heck of a job with us for six years.”

But the problem may be more a question of “what” than “where” as Crabtree is likely to seek out a team that will use him as an every down wide receiver as opposed to a WR3 as he would likely be used in San Francisco.

UPDATE – 4/3/15: Crabtree will visit the Raiders.

2) Hakeem Nicks

Nicks has definitely lost a step.  He looked like he was heading for stardom in New York after being drafted in 2009, but then injuries took the luster off. He then made his way to the Colts, but only had 38 receptions for 405 yards with 4 touchdowns in 2014. Nicks commented on NFL.com about his regression in New York:

“I think in New York, I was just having injury after injury, and I think I just wasn’t taking care of it the right way. I just kept trying to play through them instead of being patient and sitting and let it heal…. Now, I am extremely healthy. Looking back on it now, I think that’s something that I just had to go through. My body was adjusting.”

He’s not likely to be a superstar anymore, but he certainly can be a solid WR2 or WR3, and will certainly garner attention in free agency.  Unfortunately, the same sources as above noted that there isn’t much market of Nicks either, which is surprising seeing as how there are numerous teams, like the Raiders, who could still use veteran wide receiver help.

It was reported though that Nicks would be visiting the San Francisco 49ers:

He could be a third or fourth wide receiver there, but would not have a large role in light of Torrey Smith and Anquan Boldin.  We’ll see what happens.

3) Denarius Moore

Apparently, Bill Polian of ESPN thinks that Moore is a B+ receiver.  I’d have to disagree there.  But there’s no denying that there’s potential, and as we work down the list, sometimes it’s better to roll the dice with potential instead of a filler option.

It also appears that there’s little chance Moore will be re-signed by the Raiders:

It appears that Moore has had few leads, most recently with the Jets:

But so far, there’s been no progress.  There’s tons of upside here, and in light of Decker and Marshall being in town, signing this speedy threat makes a lot of sense.

4) Reggie Wayne

Reggie Wayne

As I’ve already mentioned, Wayne is a first Ballot Hall of Famer for sure.  But the big question is whether he’ll want to come back next year since he won’t be playing for the Colts.  I wrote that he should go to the Browns, but his desire to spend his last year with a contender might lead him to another team.  Although the Vikings may be a contender, depending in part on whether Adrian Peterson returns, it’s been noted that Wayne wouldn’t be a good fit for the Vikings in light of the Mike Wallace signing.  Up to this point, there’s been a real dearth of news regarding where Wayne might end up.  But at least we know he still wants to play:

5) Greg Jennings

As of two weeks ago, Greg Jennings was released from by the Minnesota Vikings.

Apparently, Jennings had minor elbow surgery, but will not have any issues moving forward:

However, there have not been any interest around the NFL as of yet.  Jennings did, however, say that he would be amenable to going back to the Packers.

Looks like Jennings will get a look from the Miami Dolphins:

And other than the Dolphins taking a look at Jennings along with Crabtree as noted above, Jennings also visited with the Carolina Panthers a week ago.

Honestly,with the decreased productivity (he had only 742 yards, the only time he had less than 1000 yards while playing all 16 games in a season), it’ll be challenging for Jennings to find a landing spot.  But a team needy for a veteran presence could do a lot worse.

Others

As we noted last week, the first ever Veteran Combine gave us few additional options at wide receiver.  Even Shawne Merriman agreed it was a good opportunity for all the wayward talent out there:

Shawne Merriman - Veterans Combine

And of course, we saw one of our suggestions, Nathan Slaughter get signed out of the Veteran Combine by the Arizona Cardinals.  The other is still out there, and he certainly can be an intriguing pick up for a team willing to gamble in the off season.

Tukashi Kurihara

Kurihara, 27, was invited to the Ravens rookie camp two years ago, but didn’t make it farther than that.  He totaled 614 yards and six touchdowns in 8 games for the IBM Big Blue of Japan’s X League last season and was previously awarded the MVP of the Kanto collegiate league in 2009 for the Hosei University Tomahawks.  As we noted previously, he had a decent 40 at the Veteran Combine and has definitely drawn attention from commentators, including one on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ site, who believes he could be an asset in the NFL.

Keep it tuned in throughout the off season and we’ll continue to keep you updated!

By Ha Kung Wong

Twitter: @FBGarbageTime

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