The Las Vegas Raiders tight end has been having an unfortunate offseason, mostly due to a hamstring injury he’s dealing with. Even though Darren Waller has missed most of training camp, he has stayed in the news, and today was no different.
Despite rumors surrounding a possible holdout due to Waller’s seeking a new contract, this notion was shot down prior to the game. In fact, head coach Josh McDaniels spoke about the matter back on Friday. Addressing the media, McDaniels explained that Waller has “been working to get back.” An integral part of the Raiders’ offense, getting Waller back and into the swing of things is definitely a priority.
Darren Waller missed Sunday’s game versus the Minnesota Vikings
On top of missing most of camp, Waller was not present for the Raiders’ second preseason matchup against the Vikings. Instead, Waller was present for the Las Vegas Aces’ game at the Michelob Ultra Arena, just a few short minutes away from Allegiant Stadium. Naturally, there was a reaction to his absence. That was mainly on social media by Raiders fans who overanalyze and overcriticize every action by a player. Before the Vikings game, it was reported that Waller had been given permission to attend the Aces’ game. Even Raiders owner Mark Davis was at the game himself, though not with Waller.
Following the Raiders’ victory over the Vikings, McDaniels was asked about the Waller “debacle.”
“I don’t want to make more of it than it was. He wasn’t going to play today anyway.”
McDaniels made a great point, if not an obvious one, that Waller wasn’t going to play regardless of his health. None of the Raders’ key offensive players have seen action in the preseason so far, such as Derek Carr, Davante Adams, Hunter Renfrow, or Kolton Miller. Hopefully, McDaniels’ straightforward response will end any sort of controversy before it takes off. Once Waller returns to camp next week, this will all die on the vine.
*Top Photo: Chris Unger/Getty Images