Giants' Darren Waller potentially out weeks with hamstring injury

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants tight end Darren Waller is "potentially" going to be out weeks with a right hamstring injury that forced him to leave in the first half of Sunday's 13-10 overtime loss to the New York Jets.

The Giants (2-6) play against Waller's former team, the Las Vegas Raiders, on Sunday as the first of three straight road games on their schedule.

Waller did not practice Wednesday but did say he was feeling a little bit better than when the injury first occurred. He still described it as "very frustrating" and "a little bit discouraging" that he's dealing with another hamstring problem.

The former Pro Bowl tight end missed eight games with a hamstring injury last year. His recovery is believed to have contributed to his trade out of Las Vegas this offseason.

Waller went into Sunday listed as questionable after being limited at practice throughout the week. This hamstring injury seems likely to force him to miss several games.

"Potentially. The amount of weeks I'm not that sure," Waller said. "But it may take a little bit."

New York has division games at Dallas and Washington after their matchup with Las Vegas. Not having Waller will be a significant loss. He's their leading receiver with 36 catches for 384 yards with one touchdown.

This news comes just as the Giants seemed to be getting healthier. They are expecting to have quarterback Daniel Jones back this week against the Raiders, even if it will be without his No. 1 receiver. Jones missed the past three games with a neck injury.

Left tackle Andrew Thomas (hamstring) and right tackle Evan Neal (ankle) also have "an opportunity" to play this week and seem to be trending in the right direction. Thomas hasn't played since the opener against the Dallas Cowboys.

Jones said he was cleared on Sunday for this week's game. He did not deny that it was again a disk injury, but reiterated it was different from 2021 when he missed the final six games with another disk problem.

It's not going to make him change, even in his first game back from the injury.

"I'm going to continue to be aggressive and look for opportunities when they're there," Jones said. "And then be smart. Get down and protect myself also. That is something I've always tried to do and try to continue to improve at. So yeah, that won't change."

So any concerns coming back from this neck injury?

"No, I'm not worried," Jones said.

Waller has concerns about his hamstring injury, if only because he's been here before. Even though it was his left hamstring last season, he knows this could be a difficult injury.

Waller, who also had a minor left hamstring injury entering Week 1, hurt the tendon that attaches to his knee on Oct. 22 against the Commanders. That left him more susceptible to pulling his hamstring, which happened during his only catch against the Jets.

Now, he needs to be extra-careful in order not to have his season slip away.

"The main reason I missed eight games last year was trying to come back and aggravating it two or three times in practice where nobody could really see it," Waller said. "So it was like, 'Where is this guy?' Taking a little more of an approach like saying, why not if it's four weeks, if it's three weeks, whatever it is, use that time efficiently and not try to be a hero and come back. That's really just me stressing and pushing. I have to take care of my body first because that is what the business is."