At the midway point of the season, we're starting to see which teams are emerging as true contenders and which teams are weeded out as pretenders. And of course, there are some teams about which we still have no idea what to think.
Regardless, at this point, there are always going to be rumors about the best candidates to hit the trading block, as contenders try to stack the roster and fill the gaps, while the league's pretenders do their best to take advantage of their players' worth for future building blocks. For those who don't know, the NFL's trade deadline is set for Oct. 28 this year.
That being said, here are three players whose respective teams should heavily consider putting each on the market.
1. Jermaine Gresham
The Bengals have already indicated they might be willing to part ways with Gresham, in his contract year, as long as it happens for the right price, considering who manages that department of the front office. With the top receivers for Cincinnati hurting, Gresham has had a golden opportunity to show his abilities a bit more in the passing game during the last two weeks.
However, once Green and Eifert come back (don't forget Jones it out for the season as well), he will likely withdraw to posting the significantly smaller numbers that we're used to, despite his talent. Now is the perfect opportunity to shop him around, now that his name has been heard a few times on the Bengals offense, and before he disappears again.
There are plenty of teams hurting for another receiver option that could be willing to take a chance on giving Gresham a change of scenery.
2. Chris Johnson
CJ2K had a nice game against the Patriots last Thursday night. It wasn't exceptional, but it was solid enough for fans to notice. The problem with the Jets' backfield is that the team already has so much talent, being loaded with Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell. New York could easily trade Johnson, perhaps to fill a hole in the secondary among injuries, and they wouldn't lose much production in the running game.
That's especially given Ivory's proven success as a bruiser. Powell blocks well and although he wouldn't provide the same change of pace that Johnson presents, I think it should be enough. And for what the Jets could get for him, it could end up benefiting the team in the long run. But they'd have to give him up at the right price.
3. Vincent Jackson
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers target has had a solid season. However, Tampa Bay knows they're nowhere near competing for....anything yet. And maybe not for a while, given recent blowouts. What about trading Jackson for a few draft picks? Or perhaps a first rounder in the 2015 draft?
The star receiver is loved in Tampa, but he should be for the numbers he puts up for the team. Likewise, he could fill the No. 1 WR spot on a lot of teams hurting at the position. He could give the Bucs what they need for longer-term growth over the next few years with young talent. It may be what the teams needs more than anything at this point.
4. Mike Williams
The Buffalo Bills could be willing to deal disgruntled wide receiver Mike Williams, according to general manager Doug Whaley. He's already said that, while the Bills are not actively shopping Williams, they would entertain offers for him. There are also reports that the New York Giants are interested in Williams.
Williams averaged 64 catches, 910 yards and eight touchdowns during his first three years in Tampa, but injuries and a trade to the Bills this offseason have led to him catching just 30 passes for 358 yards and three scores in his last 11 games.
However, with a cap hit averaging $7 million over the next four seasons, he's probably out of the question for a lot of teams. Then again, he may be willing to take a pay cut to be dealt to a team where he can play more.
5. Denarius Moore
The Raiders and wide receiver Denarius Moore need to part ways as soon as possible. Ever since his promising rookie campaign, Moore has slowly fallen out of favor due to injuries and poor effort. He led the team with five touchdown catches last season, to go with 695 yards, and has managed to catch 17 touchdowns in his first three NFL season.
However, Moore has just 10 catches for 82 yards and no scores this year. He's fallen behind Andre Holmes, Jacoby Jones and Brice Butler on the depth chart. It's time for a change of scenery, and hopefully, that revives Moore's once promising NFL career.