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2013 NFL free agents: Top offensive players available

Joe Flacco and Dwayne Bowe are off the market, but there is still plenty of offensive talent scheduled to hit free agency.

Jared Wickerham

The NFL free agent market took a hit with players like Joe Flacco, Dwayne Bowe, Ryan Clady and Branden Albert coming off the market, but there are still a number of impact players.

Wide receiver is one of the deepest free-agent positions, even with Bowe agreeing to a five-year extension with the Chiefs. The opposite can be said of the quarterback market, as it's slim pickings for teams searching for a starter. Here a complete look at the top offensive free agents available at each position.


1. Matt Moore, Miami Dolphins

2. Jason Campbell, Chicago Bears

3. Brady Quinn, Kansas City Chiefs

4. Rex Grossman, Washington Redskins

5. Josh Johnson, Cleveland Browns

Other notable free agents: Byron Leftwich, Pittsburgh Steelers; Matt Leinart, Oakland Raiders; Derek Anderson, Carolina Panthers; David Carr, New York Giants.

Teams in search of a starting quarterback will likely need to expand their search beyond the free-agent market. Not only is it not a good year to find a starting quarterback, it may not be a great year to find a backup quarterback either. Joe Flacco's extension with the Ravens took the best player off the market, but he wasn't the only one. Tarvaris Jackson and David Garrard could have been two of the better options before they both agreed to deals.

Moore lost the quarterback competition to Ryan Tannehill last season, but could get another shot to start somewhere this offseason. Moore has started 25 games in his career and had success as a starter in 2011. If he's unable to find a starting job, he would be one of the top backup quarterbacks on the market.

Campbell spent last season in Chicago backing up Jay Cutler and could get a chance to start again for a team in desperate search of a new quarterback. He has plenty of experience, but didn't do much with his chances to fill in for Cutler last season.

Johnson could be an interesting free agent for a team looking to incorporate more read-option to their scheme. He spent last season in Cleveland, although he did not attempt a pass.

A number of former first-round picks round out the rest of the list. Most of them spent last season as a second- or even third-string quarterback. None are likely to get another shot to start, and are instead more likely to attempt to catch on as a backup somewhere.

Running backs:

1. Steven Jackson, St. Louis Rams

2. Ahmad Bradshaw, New York Giants

3. Reggie Bush, Miami Dolphins

4. Rashard Mendenhall, Pittsburgh Steelers

5. Danny Woodhead, New England Patriots

Other notable free agents: Michael Turner, Atlanta Falcons; Shonn Greene, New York Jets; Felix Jones, Dallas Cowboys; Cedric Benson, Green Bay Packers; Bernard Scott, Cincinnati Bengals; Peyton Hillis, Kansas City Chiefs.

The 2013 crop of free agent running backs doesn't lack big names, but nearly every player available has at least one major question mark. After opting out of his contract, Jackson is the biggest name on the market, but some question how much he has left in the tank. He's rushed for 1,000 yards in eight straight seasons, but has nearly 2,400 career attempts, leaving plenty of wear and tear.

The 26-year-old Bradshaw doesn't have the mileage Jackson does, but he has a long injury history. If healthy, Bradshaw could be a steal for a team looking for a lead back. Mendenhall, like Bradshaw, is a young running back with an injury history, but also a track record of success as a lead back.

Bush and Woodhead may not find roles as lead running backs, but both should have a market as teams look for third-down backs who are receiving threats out of the backfield. A few other backs, including Turner, Green and Benson, should also find roles as part of running back by committees.

Wide receiver:

1. Wes Welker, New England Patriots

2. Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh Steelers

3. Danny Amendola, St. Louis Rams

4. Greg Jennings, Green Bay Packers

5. Brian Hartline, Miami Dolphins

Other notable free agents: Brandon Gibson, St. Louis Rams; Emmanuel Sanders, Pittsburgh Steelers; Julian Edelman, New England Patriots.

Bowe would have been one of the top available wide receivers, but even with his extension, the market for wide receivers is deep. The market is also diverse, as both inside and outside receivers are available.

Welker tops the list of available inside receivers as he continues to search for a long-term deal. He caught at least 100 passes in five of the last six seasons, making him one of the most reliable targets on the market. Teams who miss out on Welker may turn their attention to Amendola, who played a similar role with the Rams.

When it comes to outside receivers, Wallace isn't likely to lack suitors. Few players can match Wallace's speed and at 26 years old, he's entering the prime of his career. Wallace is coming off a down season and may not be a complete receiver, but for a number of teams in search of offensive threats, he tops the list.

Like Wallace, Jennings isn't coming off his best season and may have trouble finding the deal he is searching for. Jennings is reportedly searching for a deal that pays close to $12 million per season. Wallace and Jennings will both search for contracts that will pay them like No. 1 receivers, but players like Hartline, Gibson and Sanders could fill the needs of teams searching for No. 2 or complementary receivers.

Tight ends:

1. Tony Gonzalez, Atlanta Falcons

2. Dustin Keller, New York Jets

3. Fred Davis, Washington Redskins

4. Jared Cook, Tennessee Titans

5. Martellus Bennett, New York Giants

Other notable free agents: Anthony Fasano, Miami Dolphins; Brandon Myers, Oakland Raiders; Delanie Walker, San Francisco 49ers.

Even if Gonzalez does decide to retire, the crop of free agent tight ends will be deep. Neither Keller nor Cook were franchised, which will leave teams searching for tight ends with plenty of options.

If Gonzalez returns, he isn't likely to leave Atlanta. Keller and Cook have proven to be productive tight ends, but both have had inconsistent careers. Davis was a rising star a year ago and was designated as a franchise player last offseason, but an Achilles injury derailed his 2012 season.

After playing a backup role to Jason Witten in Dallas, Bennett was productive in a starting role with the Giants last season. He will hit the market a year later and should draw significantly more interest. Fasano and Myers also have starting experience.

Offensive linemen:

1. Andy Levitre, OG, Buffalo Bills

2. Sebastian Vollmer, OT, New England Patriots

3. Andre Smith, OT, Cincinnati Bengals

4. Phil Loadholt, OT, Minnesota Vikings

5. Luis Vasquez, OG, San Diego Chargers

Other notable free agents: Jake Long, OT, Miami Dolphins; Brandon Moore, OG, New York Jets; Dan Koppen, center, Denver Broncos, Sam Baker, OT, Atlanta Falcons; Gosder Cherilus, OT, Detroit Lions.

Even with Clady, Albert and Will Beatty off the market, the free agent crop of offensive linemen is full of young, proven starters.

Levitre is not only the best guard scheduled to hit the market, but he may be the best guard in the NFL. In most years, Levitre would have been a likely candidate for the franchise tag, but with Buffalo designating Jairus Byrd with the franchise tag, Levitre will hit the market. He could become the highest-paid guard in the NFL.

Behind Levitre, San Diego's Vasquez and New York's Moore should be able to step in and improve any offensive line. The three lead the guard market, which also includes a few under-the-radar potential starters.

With Clady and Albert both receiving the franchise tag, there aren't many left tackles available, but the free agent tackle crop is deep at right tackle. Vollmer and Smith are two of the best right tackles in the league and both should command hefty contracts on the open market. Loadholt is just below Vollmer and Smith in the crop of available right tackles.

Baker, Long and Cherilus have experience as starting left tackles, but all three have drawbacks. Long and Baker have been limited by injuries in recent seasons, while Cherilus was inconsistent during his career with the Lions.

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