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Top NFL free agent wide receivers still on the market

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Anquan Boldin and Briant Hartline could help just about any NFL offense, including the Bengals.

Jason Miller/Getty Images

With NFL training camps opening soon, there are still some quality free agent receivers waiting to find a new team.

While the market is pretty barren when it comes to No. 1 and 2 wideouts, there are guys who can make a difference in the right offense as a No. 3 or 4 option. That's exactly what the Cincinnati Bengals need after losing Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones this offseason, only to replace them with Brandon LaFell coming off a bad year and a rookie second-round pick in Tyler Boyd.

Oh, and Tyler Eifert is out for the next three to four months after being the No. 2 option in this offense last season while catching a franchise-record 13 touchdowns. Signing another receiver could help make up for that loss if Eifert misses a few games to start the season.

That's why we decided to take a look at the top free agent receivers still on the market.

Anquan Boldin

Despite the fact that he'll turn 36 in October, Anquan Boldin may still be a No. 2 possession receiver for a team like the Bengals, who have already seen plenty of Boldin during his days with the Baltimore Ravens.

Though he's now into his late 30s, age has been only a number thus far for Boldin, who spent the past three seasons with the San Francisco 49ers. Boldin had 69 catches for 789 yards and four touchdowns last season while playing alongside the enigmatic Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert, so you have to think he'd do better with Andy Dalton pulling the trigger.

Boldin has also done this with a lot of his damage being on contested balls down the field or catching a short pass and picking up big yards after the catch. He's been playing a bit slowed down for several years now but still produces as his game is not as reliant on speed as it is for many NFL wideouts.

It's safe to think Boldin has enough left in the tank to make a positive impact for the Bengals, not to mention give them another veteran with Super Bowl experience, something that's hard to find on the roster right now.

Brian Hartline

While Boldin may have a high upside, Brian Hartline may be the surest thing left on the market. Hartline, who turns 30 in November, spent only one season with the Cleveland Browns while catching 46 passes for 523 yards and two touchdowns in just 12 games last year after signing a two-year deal worth $6 million.

And it's not like Hartline was getting good quarterback play from either Josh McCown or Johnny Manziel, but still posted consecutive stat lines of 6-for-77, 8-for-74, 8-for-83 and 8-for-107 during his final four games last season.

Hartline spent his first six NFL seasons with the Miami Dolphins as his best seasons came fairly recently in 2012 and 2013, when he had more than 1,000 yards receiving both years. If he can still play at that level, Hartline may actually be able to simulate the production lost by Jones, and at worst, should give the Bengals what Sanu did.

Hakeem Nicks

It's unclear if the Bengals will have any interest in either Hartline or Boldin, but they have already kicked the tires on Hakeem Nicks. The former New York Giants star from 2009-13 helped lead the franchise to a win in Super Bowl XLVI.

Following the 2013 season, Nicks signed a one-year deal worth a maximum of $5.5 million with the Indianapolis Colts. That came after Nicks did not record a touchdown catch in 2013, but still finished with 896 receiving yards in 15 games. But from there, Nicks' career would dramatically decline as he caught just 38 passes for 408 yards and four touchdowns in 2014.

The Colts opted not to re-sign Nicks during the 2015 offseason, leading him to sign a minimal deal with the Tennessee Titans. Nicks was later cut during final roster cuts before reuniting with the Giants on Nov. 15 of this past season on a one-year deal. Nicks appeared in six games and made seven grabs for 54 yards in 2015.

Thus far in the 2016 offseason, Nicks has drawn virtually no interest around the NFL, but did score a workout with Cincinnati back in April. At just 28-years-old, Nicks, in theory, should have enough left in the tank to be an effective receiver, so the Bengals could bring him on once training camp opens.

Here's a look at our ranking of the 15 best receivers on the market:

Anquan Boldin, WR, 49ers. Age: 35

Andre Roberts, WR, Washington. Age: 28

Brandon Gibson, WR, Patriots. Age: 29

James Jones, WR, Packers. Age: 32

Hakeem Nicks, WR, Giants. Age: 28

Greg Jennings, WR, Dolphins. Age: 32

Andre Johnson, WR, Colts. Age: 35

Jason Avant, WR, Chiefs. Age: 33

Lance Moore, WR, Lions. Age: 33

Riley Cooper, WR, Eagles. Age: 28

DeVier Posey, WR, Broncos. Age: 26

Wes Welker, WR, Rams. Age: 35

Nick Toon, WR, Rams. Age: 27

Seyi Ajirotutu, WR, Eagles. Age: 29

Chris Owusu, WR, Jets. Age: 26