Sanders remains in play for 49ers as top WRs find new homes

Sanders remains in play for 49ers as top WRs find new homes
March 15, 2014, 2:45 pm
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Emmanuel Sanders is coming off his best season with 67 passes for 740 yards and six touchdowns. (USATSI)

Programming note: NFL free agency is well underway! Check out Matt Maiocco's 49ers free agent tracker and watch SportsNet Central nightly at 6 and 10:30 p.m. for all the latest football news.

Julian Edelman is returning the New England Patriots. Hakeem Nicks is going to Indianapolis. Steve Smith is now a member of the Baltimore Ravens. And Golden Tate is now with the Detroit Lions.

Many of the top available wide receivers have already found free-agent homes. And the 49ers’ search to find a player to complement Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin continues.

With an estimated $3.5 million in salary-cap space, the 49ers are expected to meet on Sunday with Pittsburgh Steelers free-agent wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders.

Sanders is a slot receiver who is coming off the best season of his career. He caught 67 passes for 740 yards and six touchdowns, but his average reception was a career-low 11.0 yards. He has already made free agent visits to Jacksonville, Tampa Bay and Kansas City.

Edelman is the only other free agent receiver who has visited the 49ers. He was in Santa Clara on Friday. The Redwood City native announced Saturday on Twitter that he would be re-signing with the Patriots after posting career-best numbers with 105 catches for 1,056 yards and six touchdowns.