NFL Trade Deadline: New Orleans Saints Acquire CB Eli Apple From New York Giants

The New Orleans Saints have addressed their need for a defensive back prior to next week's NFL trade deadline.

The Saints acquired cornerback Eli Apple from the New York Giants in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, as well as a seventh-round selection in 2020.

Apple, a former first-round pick, had a tumultuous stint during three seasons with the Giants before being traded on Tuesday. Last season, he was suspended for arguing with a coach and was referred to as a "cancer" by teammate Landon Collins.

However, the 23-year-old has played well during his five appearances in 2018 and seemed to have mended his problems with Collins during the offseason.

"When I saw it happen, I was like, 'Why?'" Collins said told 98.7 ESPN's Michael Kay on Tuesday when discussing the trade. "... We don't know honestly [why Apple was traded]. The locker room's been great. The guys have been great. The attitudes have been great. We all have been positive. We were shocked, literally. Defensively, we are shocked by this."

The Saints were also reportedly interested in Arizona Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter and Peterson's cousin, Bryant McFadden. However, the former Pro Bowl defensive back has a much larger contract than Apple, who is still on his rookie deal.

New Orleans had previously traded its 2019 first-round pick in order to move up for defensive end Marcus Davenport in last year's draft, as well as a third-round pick to acquire backup quarterback Teddy Bridgewater from the New York Jets during the preseason.

Apple was selected by the New York Giants at No. 10 overall in the 2016 NFL Draft. He recorded 23 tackles and has one forced fumble this season, despite missing two games due to a groin injury.

The former Ohio State cornerback admitted that he was "embarrassed" by his conduct during the 2017 season, adding "nobody wants to go out the way I went out," in an interview with ESPN. Apple revealed that he met with new general manager Dave Gettleman and coach Pat Shurmur this offseason and was told that he would be given a clean slate in 2018.

Apple's mother, Annie, tweeted her gratitude toward the Giants organization after news broke of her son's trade.

New Orleans currently ranks No. 28 overall in passing yards allowed per game (293.7) and eight passing plays of more than 42-plus yards, which is tied for the most among NFL teams.