Published On: Wed, Feb 28th, 2018

Ranking the top available free-agent WRs

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NFL free agency begins March 14 – the first day of the new league year. Here is our list of the top 10 free-agent wide receivers.

10. John Brown


2017 Team: Arizona Cardinals
2017 Salary: $1,797,000
2017 Stats: 21 receptions, 299 receiving yards, 3 TDs

Brown enjoyed an explosive first two seasons in the NFL, eclipsing the 1,000-yard mark in 2015. His two most recent campaigns, however, have been less than stellar. Battling various injuries, Brown appeared in just 10 games in 2017, posting career lows in both catches and yards. With Bruce Arians retired, the speedy receiver may be better suited playing for a new team. If fully healthy, Brown could be a bargain on a one-year contract for an offense looking for a dynamic deep threat.

9. Donte Moncrief


2017 Team: Indianapolis Colts
2017 Salary: $1,797,000
2017 Stats: 26 receptions, 391 receiving yards, 2 TDs

Drafted by the Colts in 2014 (third round), Moncrief has been plagued by injuries and inconsistencies during his first four seasons in the NFL. Moncrief had a promising sophomore campaign but has struggled without Andrew Luck. The wideout has missed 11 games over the last two seasons nursing various injuries and posted a career low in receptions and touchdowns in 2017. Still, Moncrief is only 24 years old and possesses starting-caliber traits, so there should be room for improvement. He could be a bargain free agent addition on a one-year deal this offseason.

8. Mike Wallace


2017 Team: Baltimore Ravens
2017 Salary: $4,750,000
2017 Stats: 52 receptions, 748 receiving yards, 4 TDs

Wallace has been Baltimore‘s top receiver since signing with the team in 2016. Turning 32 in August, he may not land a long-term contract, but the veteran has put his career back on track after inconsistent stints in Miami and Minnesota. The former Steelers third-round pick has caught 124 passes over the last two seasons, eclipsing the 1000-yard receiving mark during the 2016 season. Though mistake-prone at times, Wallace is still a dependable deep threat.

7. Danny Amendola


2017 Team: New England Patriots
2017 Salary: $1,250,000
2017 Stats: 61 receptions, 659 receiving yards, 2 TDs

Much like Wallace, Amendola‘s age (32) probably won’t land him a lengthy contract, but he’s still a productive slot receiver. Amendola has a checkered injury history but managed to stay healthy in 2017, turning in his most productive season with the Patriots. The veteran stepped up his game during the playoffs, adding 26 receptions, 348 yards, and two crucial touchdowns. No receiver had more catches or yards from the slot than Amendola this postseason. However, the receiver may be expendable in New England with Julian Edelman returning from ACL surgery.

6. Cameron Meredith


2017 Team: Chicago Bears
2017 Salary: $615,000
2017 Stats: N/A

Meredith is a restricted free agent, so the Bears could tender him before the new league year begins, but other teams will have interest in his upside. The former undrafted free agent registered 66 receptions, 888 yards, and four touchdowns in 2016, and seemed poised for a big third season. Unfortunately, he tore his ACL and partially tore his MCL in August. It’s unclear if Meredith will ever be the same player again, but he has enough potential to garner interest on the market. He’s 25 years old and possesses great measurables (6-foot-3, 207 lbs).

5. Terrelle Pryor


2017 Team: Washington Redskins
2017 Salary: $3,000,000
2017 Stats: 20 receptions, 240 receiving yards, 1 TD

Pryor is difficult to evaluate. He eclipsed the 1,000-yard milestone in Cleveland despite poor quarterback play and was expected to explode with the Redskins after signing a one-year contract. The results were disappointing; Pryor caught only 20 passes in nine games, his lowest production since converting to receiver. He failed to establish any sort of chemistry with Kirk Cousins and is certainly on his way out of Washington. If placed on the right team, the former quarterback could rebound in 2018.

4. Marqise Lee


2017 Team: Jacksonville Jaguars
2017 Salary: $1,125,549
2017 Stats: 56 receptions, 702 receiving yards, 3 TDs

Lee has been solid during his tenure in Jacksonville. The 2014 second-round pick has accumulated 119 catches and six touchdowns after a rocky first two seasons, setting career highs across the board in 2016. It’s easy to look at Lee’s stats and come away unimpressed, but the wideout played in a conservative offense with mediocre quarterback play. The 26-year-old’s production could boost in a spread scheme.

3. Paul Richardson


2017 Team: Seattle Seahawks
2017 Salary: $1,062,660
2017 Stats: 44 receptions, 703 receiving yards, 6 TDs

Turning 26 in April, Paul Richardson‘s breakout season couldn’t have come at a better time. After three inconsistent years, including an injury-filled 2015, Richardson set career highs in receptions, receiving yards, yards per reception (16.0), and touchdowns in 2017. Loaded with potential, the speedster could land himself a big payday this offseason. If the former second-round pick does, in fact, leave Seattle, it will be interesting to see what he can do in a more explosive offense.

2. Sammy Watkins


2017 Team: Los Angeles Rams
2017 Salary: $690,000
2017 Stats: 39 receptions, 593 receiving yards, 8 TDs

Watkins hasn’t quite lived up to his first-round (fourth overall) status, but he’ll still command a large contract if he reaches the open market. After being traded from the Bills, Watkins was an effective red-zone target for the Rams last season, but did not come close to his production in Buffalo. He did manage to stay healthy after missing 11 games between 2015-2016, however. The former Clemson Tiger is extremely talented and still young (25 in June), so he could easily post career numbers in the near future.

1. Allen Robinson


2017 Team: Jacksonville Jaguars
2017 Salary: $898,755
2017 Stats: 1 reception, 17 receiving yards (1 GP)

Robinson is coming off a lost season after tearing his left ACL in Week 1, but possesses All-Pro potential. He had an incredible 2015 for the Jaguars (1,400 yards, 14 TDs) and still produced despite a slight regression in 2016 (883 yards, 6 TDs). While the receiver’s knee injury is concerning, he expects to be fully healthy this upcoming season. Robinson will turn just 25 this summer, so he still has a bright future ahead of him. Unfortunately, he may need to escape Jacksonville to achieve it. If Robinson is not tagged before the deadline, expect him to receive more than one lucrative offer.

(Photos courtesy: Getty Images)
(Contract figures courtesy: Over The Cap)



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