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Top Wide Receivers on the Market

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Norm Hitzges of Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket in Dallas had an “interesting” statistic this week. The Cowboys have 12 wide receivers on the training camp roster. If you take away Miles Austin and Dez Bryant, those ten remaining receivers have 25 career receptions and zero touchdowns – and all 25 receptions are from Kevin Ogletree.

I put “interesting” in quotes, because that’s actually quite scary.

Even scarier – the Cowboys are making a mighty big assumption that they’ll get full seasons from Austin and Bryant. Austin’s hamstrings are already giving him issues again (the same injury that sidelined him for a lot of 2011), and Bryant could potentially be in legal and/or league hot water.

That means Dallas may eventually scour the free agent market for available receivers. Unfortunately there isn’t much talent out there, as you’ll notice after listing five of the top options.

  1. Anthony Gonzalez – When a guy who essentially hasn’t recorded any stats in three seasons is leading the list, it says a lot about the list. Gonzalez is a former first-round pick who had a couple of good seasons with Peyton Manning in Indianapolis. Then injuries set in. In his final three years in Indy, Gonzalez caught five passes. He signed with New England in the off-season but was cut a few weeks later.
  2. Mike Sims-Walker – Speaking of guys who are familiar with the roster-cut process, Mike Sims-Walker is available. He’s been told no by four franchises in the past year, including teams like St. Louis, Tennessee and Jacksonville. That’s not exactly a murderers’ row of wide receiver talent. On the bright side, Sims-Walker is still young and has a couple of strong years on his resume. As Hitzges pointed out, Sims-Walker’s career is awfully similar to Laurent Robinson’s before Dallas signed Robinson last year.
  3. Plaxico Burress – Admittedly, Burress would likely be #1 on this list (or not on this list at all) if it weren’t for the baggage he lugs around. Just this week, for instance, he made TMZ once again for being $60,000 in the hole with his taxes. He caught 45 passes, including eight TDs, for the Jets last season – but he’s now 34 years old.
  4. Patrick Crayton – Crayton was a solid contributor during his initial run with the Cowboys, both as a receiver and a punt returner. But his dropped pass against the Giants in the playoffs still stings for many Dallas fans, and his tenure ended with a request to be traded. So who knows if either side would be up for a reunion. He’s a year younger than Burress and still contributed a bit for San Diego last year, despite that team’s mess of a season.
  5. Roy Williams – On second thought, let’s just end the list at four spots.

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