Raiders TE Darren Waller Dealing With Hamstring Injury

Much has been made this offseason about the most significant addition to the Raiders’ pass-catching corps, and the effect he will have on the team’s WR room. Much of the offense’s success will still depend on the play of tight end Darren Waller, though, which makes his health status one of great importance. 

The Pro Bowler has been “held out of” Vegas’ training camp due to a hamstring injury, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter (Twitter link). He adds that the issue is not considered serious, something which is encouraging, but nevertheless a potential source of concern in the build-up to the season.

Waller missed five games last year due to an IT band strain, the first time since 2018 that he spent any period on the sidelines. The injury limited him to 665 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns, but he was on pace for another highly productive season as the focal point of the Raiders’ passing attack. The month-plus absence was longer than originally expected, so the fact that Waller is again off the field for an extended period could prove problematic if the injury lingers into the regular season.

The 29-year-old was understandably listed as an extension candidate this offseason, given the disparity between his contract and level of play during his time with the Raiders. Set to earn $6.25MM in each of the next two seasons, Waller would be in line for a significant raise on a new deal – something which was reported as being imminent back in June.

The team, under new GM Dave Ziegler, acquired Davante Adams at a massive cost (both in terms of draft capital and the subsequent extension he signed). The Raiders also inked fellow receiver Hunter Renfrow to a new deal, ensuring QB Derek Carr will have the most talented array of skill-position players in his career. To help the team meet its heightened expectations (and improve his own financial future), though, Waller will need to return to full health in advance of the campaign – something which may still be in doubt at this point.

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