Eli Apple to become free agent as New Orleans Saints decline fifth-year option
Last Updated: 02/05/19 8:27am
Eli Apple is set to become a free agent at the end of the 2019 NFL season after the New Orleans Saints declined the cornerback's fifth-year option.
Apple was drafted 10th overall in 2016 by the New York Giants but joined the Saints in the 2018 trade deadline, giving up fourth and seventh-round draft picks in the process.
Apple's fifth season in 2020 would have been worth $13.7 million, which ranks among the highest-paid cornerbacks in the NFL.
The 23-year-old had two interceptions in 10 games for the Saints after intercepting one pass in 30 career games with the Giants.
He also had nine passes defended with the Saints, more than in any single season with the Giants.
Thursday is the deadline for teams to pick up fifth-year options for 2016 first-round picks with all draft picks signing four-year deals, and first-round draft picks having a fifth-year team option.
However, the Saints have picked up the fifth-year option for their own 2016 draft pick, defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins.