The timing of this move is somewhat interesting, as Joe Person of The Athletic notes that the move comes a few hours after Apple told the coaches he couldn’t practice on his injured hamstring.
The Panthers have released CB Eli Apple, a few hours after he left practice early after telling coaches he couldn’t go on his injured hamstring today.
— Joe Person (@josephperson) October 27, 2020
Apple has been a recurring name on the injury report this season. He missed parts of camp and was placed on injured reserve with foot, ankle, and hamstring injuries. He played six special teams snaps upon his return, during which he injured his other hamstring. He missed two weeks with that injury before returning to play the Saints. That most recent injury kept him out of practice today and ultimately sealed his release.
It’s the latest addition to what has been a tumultuous career for the former top ten pick. Apple was suspended for the last game of the 2017 season after New York Giants teammate Landon Collins referred to him as “a cancer.” He was traded to the Saints the following season, but the Saints declined his fifth year option and let him walk at the end of 2019. Now, after a series of ailments that led to Apple spending more time on the training table than on the football field, his career as a Carolina Panther is over.