2021 NFL Fifth-Year Option Tracker

NFL teams have until May 3 to officially pick up their 2021 options on players who are entering the final year of their rookie deals. These fifth-year options can only be exercised on first-round draft picks. The salaries are determined by where players were selected and what position they play.

If a player has his option exercised, his rookie contract will be extended by one year and he’ll be eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2022, after the conclusion of the 2021 season. If a player’s option is declined, he’ll be eligible to hit the open market a year earlier. Of course, if a 2017 first-rounder is no longer on his rookie contract, there will be no option to exercise or decline.

Soon, we’ll learn the official salary figures for all 2021 fifth-year options. What we do know is that the option salaries for top 10 picks is equal to the transition tender at the player’s position during his fourth season. So, because the transition tag for defensive ends this year is worth more than $16MM, we already know the size of Myles Garrett‘s fifth-year option.

With the May deadline looming, we’ll use the space below to track all the option decisions from around the league based on various reports and official announcements. Here are this season’s fifth-year option decisions so far:

Updated 5-4-20, 02:30pm CT

  1. Myles Garrett, DE (Browns): Exercised
  2. Mitchell Trubisky, QB (Bears): Declined
  3. Solomon Thomas, DE (49ers): Declined
  4. Leonard Fournette, RB (Jaguars): Declined
  5. Corey Davis, WR (Titans): Declined
  6. Jamal Adams, S (Jets): Exercised
  7. Mike Williams, WR (Chargers): Exercised
  8. Christian McCaffrey, RB (Panthers): Exercised; Followed by extension
  9. John Ross, WR (Bengals): Declined
  10. Patrick Mahomes, QB (Chiefs): Exercised
  11. Marshon Lattimore, CB (Saints): Exercised
  12. Deshaun Watson, QB (Texans): Exercised
  13. Haason Reddick, LB (Cardinals): Declined
  14. Derek Barnett, DE (Eagles): Exercised
  15. Malik Hooker, S (Colts): Declined
  16. Marlon Humphrey, CB (Ravens): Exercised
  17. Jonathan Allen, DE (Redskins): Exercised
  18. Adoree’ Jackson, CB (Titans): Exercised
  19. O.J. Howard, TE (Buccaneers): Exercised
  20. Garett Bolles, OT (Broncos): Declined
  21. Jarrad Davis, LB (Lions): Declined
  22. Charles Harris, DE (Falcons, from Dolphins): Declined
  23. Evan Engram, TE (Giants): Exercised
  24. Gareon Conley, CB (Texans): Declined
  25. Jabrill Peppers, S (Giants): Exercised
  26. Takkarist McKinley, DE (Falcons): Declined
  27. Tre’Davious White, CB (Bills): Exercised
  28. Taco Charlton, DE (Dolphins): Waived
  29. David Njoku, TE (Browns): Exercised
  30. T.J. Watt, LB (Steelers): Exercised
  31. Reuben Foster, LB (Redskins): Declined
  32. Ryan Ramczyk, OT (Saints): Exercised
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13 comments on “2021 NFL Fifth-Year Option Tracker

  1. crosseyedlemon

    Taco’s future will depend on how badly the Dolphins need to order take out.

  2. wagner13

    Who’s the biggest bust of the class? Thomas, Trubisky, Ross, or Reddick?

    • crosseyedlemon

      That’s a bit like asking if a round, square, diamond or star hole in the bottom of a water barrel is worse. Since you end up without water in every case, it probably doesn’t matter.

      • wagner13

        Based on quality of play relative to expectations, I would say Trubisky. However, Reddick is atrocious and Ross can’t stay healthy. At least Trubisky has shown occasional flashes of competence

    • wagner13

      Thus far, Jamal Adams if only because he’s more proven. James has only played 21 games, so it remains to be seen if he continue his outstanding production. That said, he certainly looks promising

  3. crosseyedlemon

    Enjoy these trackers but would appreciate some additional context. What is the percentage of options exercised in past years? Which colleges have delivered the goods and which have not? A breakdown by position would also be interesting.

    • wagner13

      I wish this site would do more “exclusive features” like the MLB edition. I understand this iteration is relatively new and unpopular, but I think some deeper analysis and historical context would drive traffic

      • crosseyedlemon

        The site is always open to suggestions and needs feedback to gauge what users want. I try to offer some feedback occasionally but I notice many others only want to criticize without making any suggestions as to how things could be better.

  4. Approximate estimate of option value would be very helpful even if you have to come back and change it later Zachs. Without the dollar figure it’s difficult to judge a club’s decision.

    • Trubiskys option is 24 million, if the bears pick it up Chicago will collectively lose its mind, fournettes was 8 mil and didn’t get picked up…as a live and die with team bears fan for the love of the old gods and the new gods do not pick up that option

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