December 8, 2021

GridIron365

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PFF names Eli Apple the worst New York Giants draft pick since 2006

3 min read


The New York Giants, under general managers Jerry Reese and Dave Gettleman, have made some pretty bad picks in the NFL draft over the past 15 years.

Names like Clint Sintim, Will Beatty, Marvin Austin, Damontre Moore, Ereck Flowers and Deandre Baker immediately come to mind, but who is the team’s worst pick since 2006?

Well, it’s none of the above… At least not according to Michael Renner of Pro Football Focus.

Renner recently broke down his list of each team’s worst draft pick since 2006 and for the Giants, he settled on Ohio State cornerback Eli Apple in 2016.

NEW YORK GIANTS: CB ELI APPLE, OHIO STATE (NO. 10 OVERALL IN 2016)

Apple lasted only two and a half years in the Big Apple before he was dealt midseason to New Orleans for a fourth- and seventh-round pick. His tenure with the Giants was marred by reported maturity issues. He allowed a passer rating over 100 in both seasons as a starter.

The Giants paid a high premium to bring Apple to East Rutherford and the relationship was doomed almost immediately.

Reese was heavily criticized for reaching to take Apple after the Tennessee Titans selected offensive tackle Jack Conklin and the Chicago Bears traded up ahead of the Giants to select linebacker Leonard Floyd.

The GM claimed the decision was made based on Apple’s impressive injury history, but that went quickly out the window as the cornerback suffered a hamstring injury in Week 3 of that season. Immediately upon Apple’s return, he suffered a groin injury.

In total, Apple missed seven games over his first two seasons with the Giants, but that was hardly the reason why the relationship failed.

As Renner notes, there were concerns about Apple’s maturity level and it was something that began to take a toll on his teammates. He engaged in a public spat with safety Landon Collins, who called Apple a “cancer” at one point. Apple also drew the ire of his teammates for tweeting on the sidelines, which ended in disciplinary action, and celebrating a former college teammate (Dallas Cowboys running back Rod Smith) scoring two touchdowns against the Giants in 2017.

“I had a conversation with Eli about that. I was disappointed,” interim coach Steve Spagnuolo told reporters at the time. “I told him I was disappointed. We’ll decide exactly what we do with it.”

Apple’s mother, Annie, certainly didn’t help the situation as she was a vocal critic of Giants co-owner John Mara and his handling of the Josh Brown situation. She also threatened to sue a Giants beat writer at one point.

In October of 2018, after Apple missed multiple games due to injury, the Giants finally pulled the plug, trading him to the New Orleans Saints for multiple draft picks.

PFF names Eli Apple the worst Giants draft pick since 2006



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