Tight end Evan Engram and safety Jabrill Peppers aren’t going anywhere, at least until after the 2021 season.
The Giants made official Wednesday night what was widely speculated and expected, picking up the fifth-year options on players selected two picks apart in the first round of the 2017 draft. Engram went No. 23 to the Giants, and Peppers went No. 25 to the Browns. The safety was shipped to the Giants last year in the mega-deal that sent Odell Beckham Jr. to Cleveland.
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Picking up the fifth-year option basically extends the four-year rookie deals of these players by another year. It guarantees Engram will make $6 million in 2021 and Peppers $6.8 million, unless the Giants come to terms on a new contract with either player before then.
This represents excellent value for the Giants. The 2021 contacts are guaranteed against injury, and the Giants can part ways with Engram, 25, or Peppers, 24, after the 2020 season, if they wish, without any financial ramification.
Engram played in just eight games in 2019, sidelined with a sprained knee then ligament damage in his foot, which necessitated Dec. 20 surgery. He has vowed to be ready to return in time for training camp.
After spending his first two NFL seasons with the Browns, Peppers also ended last season on injured reserve with a transverse process fracture in his back. He started the first 11 games and led the Giants in tackles (76) and forced fumbles (three).
“Engram, Peppers both these guys bring a lot of energy to our program,’’ new head coach Joe Judge said this week. “Can’t wait to see ‘em on the field competing with the other guys on our team and eventually against opponents.’’