EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 27:  Ryan Fitzpatrick #14 of the New York Jets throws a pass in the first quarter against the New England Patriots during their game at MetLife Stadium on December 27, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)

The top players available in the second wave of NFL free agency

The majority of the top free agents who hit the market early last week have been signed, but there are still some talented players lingering. Here the best of them.

1. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick: Being a semi-reliable veteran quarterback automatically gets you on this list. Fitzpatrick’s numbers are never particularly pretty, but he’s battle-tested and he nearly led the Jets to the playoffs in 2015. New York appears to be low-balling him right now, leaving Denver as a possible landing spot.

2. Offensive tackle Kelvin Beachum: The 26-year-old was one of the best pass protectors in football in 2014 before missing the majority of the 2015 campaign due to a torn ACL. Pittsburgh has reportedly been entertaining other left tackles, but Beachum remains available — possibly because there are questions regarding when he’ll be able to resume playing.

3. Safety Reggie Nelson: The 32-year-old made his first Pro Bowl with an eight-interception 2015 campaign. He might have less gas in his tank than Weddle but is just as strong a player and a better playmaker. There’s word the Redskins could be interested, which would make a lot of sense.

4. Safety Walter Thurmond: The versatile playmaker can sometimes be a liability in coverage and is injury prone. At 28, though, he’ll have a chance to start somewhere. Thus far, after a huge payday last offseason, he’s having trouble finding work.

5. Cornerback Patrick Robinson: The 28-year-old former first-round pick really excelled in coverage during his first year in San Diego and should be viewed as a solid No. 2 corner in his prime. He reportedly visited the Rams on Monday.

6. Defensive tackle Nick Fairley: The 28-year-old former first-round pick was fantastic in a limited role with the the Rams. He might finally be ready to live up to his potential. The Eagles reportedly have interest, which makes sense with Jim Schwartz taking over that defense.

7. Cornerback Leon Hall: The 31-year-old actually had a stronger season than teammate Adam Jones in coverage. And he’s younger to boot. The Cardinals are reportedly interested.

8. Offensive tackle Russell Okung: The veteran left tackle is a bit overrated but would probably still be an upgrade on at least a handful of rosters. He reportedly has offers on the table from the Lions, Steelers and Giants.

9. Defensive end Chris Long: The former No. 2 overall pick put up stellar numbers between 2011 and 2013 but has disappeared since. Is he done at the age of 31? He seems motivated to get back on track, so we’ll see what a new setting does for him. He reportedly visited New England on Monday, which isn’t real surprising.

10. Offensive tackle Andre Smith: He had a bad 2015 season and is 29, which has me wondering if he’ll linger on the market for a while. Still, he’s got the ability to excel as a top-10 right tackle in the right setting. He’ll reportedly visit the Carolina Panthers this week.

Brad Gagnon

About Brad Gagnon

Brad Gagnon has been passionate about both sports and mass media since he was in diapers -- a passion that won't die until he's in them again. Based in Toronto, he's worked as a national NFL blog editor at theScore.com, a producer and writer at theScore Television Network and a host, reporter and play-by-play voice at Rogers TV. His work has also appeared at CBSSports.com, Deadspin, FoxSports.com, The Guardian, The Hockey News and elsewhere at Comeback Media, but his day gig has him covering the NFL nationally for Bleacher Report.

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