EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The Giants announced today that they have chosen fifth year options on tight end Evan Engram and safety Jabrill Peppers rookie contracts, virtually ensuring they will be with the team throughout throughout the 2021 season.
NFL teams are allowed to exercise the fifth year option on first round picks after playing three years. When a player exercises his option, his rookie contract is extended for one year and guaranteed. The player is protected from injury but is not allowed unrestricted free agency until the end of the fifth season – for Engram and Peppers, that is, after the 2021 season.
Engram, 25, was the 23rd overall selection in the 2017 Mississippi NFL Draft. In three seasons, he has played 34 games with 25 starts. Engram has 153 receptions for 1,766 yards (11.5 yards on average) and 12 touchdowns. He also has seven rushing attempts for 57 yards.
In 2019, Engram was limited to eight appearances and six starts due to injuries and caught 44 passes for 467 yards and three touchdowns. He missed Thursday’s October 10 game in New England with a knee injury, returned to play in the next three games, but injured his foot against Dallas on November 4 and missed the rest of the season.
When the season opened in Dallas on September 8, Engram finished with 11 receptions for 116 yards, including one touchdown on a yard. Receipt and yardage totals were the highest for a tight Giants winger since November 11, 2007, when Jeremy Shockey caught 12 passes for 129 yards in a home game against the Cowboys.
Two weeks later in Tampa Bay, Engram caught six passes for 113 yards. He was the Giants’ first tight winger with multiple 100-yard games in a season since Shockey in 2005 (four).
In the first game of the second half against the Buccaneers, Engram caught a short pass from Daniel Jones and turned him into a 75-yard touchdown. It was the Giants’ longest game since September 24, 2017, when Eli Manning and Sterling Shepard met for 77 yards completion – like the Engram game, a catch-and-long run.
Engram’s 75-yard touchdown reception was the longest on a tight end by the Giants. The long run was a 71-yard Aaron Thomas against Philadelphia on October 17, 1965.
The 75 yard was also the longest reception in Engram’s career. His last long catch was 54 yards last November 18, also against Tampa Bay (at MetLife Stadium).
Engram also had six receptions against Minnesota on October 6 and the Cowboys in their last game of the year.