Teams with players picked in the first round of the 2013 draft have to decide whether to exercise fifth-year options on those players’ contracts before the May 3 deadline to do so.
The Saints have reportedly opted not to go down to the wire with a call on safety Kenny Vaccaro’s contract. Albert Breer of NFL Media reports that the team has exercised the option, making them the first team to do so with a member of this year’s draft class.
As the 15th pick of the 2013 draft, Vaccaro’s salary for the 2017 season would be the average of the 3rd-25th best-paid safeties in the league. That should be somewhere in the mid-$5 million range for Vaccaro, although the official number isn’t known yet. The option is guaranteed against injury only, so the Saints can opt to move on from Vaccaro before it goes into effect if they change their minds and he’s healthy.
Vaccaro has been a starter for 44 of the 48 regular season games that the Saints have played since drafting him and has 257 tackles, five sacks, three interceptions and two forced fumbles over that span.