It won't be long until NFL free agency is here and we see hundreds of millions of dollars getting shelled out to some of the league's top players.
While the Bengals won't be spending too much on outside free agents, the hope is they will be handing out some big contracts to their biggest impending free agents. While the market is hard to predict, guys like Reggie Nelson, Adam Jones, George Iloka and Marvin Jones figure to command sizable contracts that not every NFL team will be able to afford.
In fact, Iloka and Nelson are viewed as two of the top free agent safeties this offseason. Pro Football Focus ranked their top 75 overall free agents and Kansas City's Eric Berry and San Diego's Eric Weddle were the only safeties ranked higher than Nelson and Iloka, who both made it inside the top 30.
26. George Iloka
Iloka is a well-rounded safety who has graded positively in run defense and coverage the last two seasons. In 2014, he allowed a passer rating of 18.4 when targeted in coverage, among the lowest out of all safeties that season.
27. Reggie Nelson
Best as a deep safety, Nelson has earned positive coverage grades each of the past five seasons, with last year's +8.1 cumulative grade being the second-highest of his nine-year career.
Also making the top 30 was wide receiver Marvin Jones, who is actually one of the two or three best receivers set to hit the market.
29. Marvin Jones, WR
Jones probably isn't suited for a No. 1 receiver role, but he's definitely proven to be an effective starter, particularly with his work after the catch.
To give you an idea of how bare this wide receiver free agent class is, Chicago's Alshon Jeffery is PFF's second-best free agent overall, but there isn't another receiver on their list until Jones, and then the next guy doesn't come until Miami's Rishard Matthews at 67th overall.
In other words, expect several teams to throw out No. 1 receiver contracts at Jones, which will make it very hard for the Bengals to re-sign him as they have a No. 1 in A.J. Green, who they're paying handsomely.
The next Bengal to make PFF's list is Adam Jones, who in theory is one of the best corners hitting the market, but his age makes him a risky signing in the long term.
37. Adam Jones
When it comes to strictly on-field performance, Jones has always fared well in coverage. He plays almost exclusively on the outside, and is coming off his second-highest coverage grade since 2007.
Another Bengals corner making the list is Leon Hall at 53rd overall, who should have enough left in the tank for one or two more good seasons, but isn't going to get a big contract this offseason.
53. Leon Hall
Hall isn't quite the player he used to be, but he's still one of the better options for slot cornerbacks in the league. He has earned positive overall grades and coverage grades in each of his nine NFL seasons.
The final Bengal on PFF's list is Andre Smith. It's not often a 29-year-old former No. 6 overall pick makes it to free agency with virtually no interest in a new deal by his current team, which probably speaks to why Smith isn't exactly someone who's going to draw many quality offers this offseason. But, with just a few quality right tackles hitting free agency, he should still expect to see a sizeable pay day.
69. Andre Smith
Smith is coming off the worst season of his career, but injuries and concussions may have played a part. Still, he's just a few years removed from being our highest-graded right tackle in the league,
Seeing the six Bengals mentioned above, I would probably have Hall a little lower on PFF's list and maybe Smith a big higher, maybe even ahead of Hall. Say what you will about Smith's shortcomings over the past two years, but he can still be a serviceable starting right tackle in this league for a few more years. I'm not sure Hall can be a starting corner anymore, but he may have one good year left in him.
Also, you can pretty much bump all of the Bengals up a few spots since several of the top names will be getting franchise tagged and won't hit the market. Jeffery, Muhammad Wilkerson, Von Miller, Josh Norman and Kirk Cousins will almost certainly get tagged, and there are 2-3 other guys on the list who may get tagged as well.
That means someone like Iloka, in theory, is going to be one of the 20 best free agents to hit the market, making him even harder to re-sign this offseason.
What do you think of PFF's rankings?