Giants still missing 2 key receivers with off-season program ramping up

New York Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton (86) gets ready to score a touchdown during a 24-point Giants first half, Sunday, January 7, 2024
Kevin R. Wexler / USA TODAY NETWORKCredit: Kevin R. Wexler / USA TODAY NETWORK

The New York Giants have gone through 2024 OTA’s without their two leading receivers from 2023 in uniform.

Giants tight end Darren Waller and wide receiver Darius Slayton have still not shown up for the yearly spring workouts, which prompted reporters to ask head coach Brian Daboll about their statuses ahead of the 2024 campaign.

Per John Fennelly of Giants Wire, coach Daboll had this to say about Waller’s no-show as he ponders retirement:

“I would say the same thing I said last month, let Darren take what he needs to take and once the decision is made, we’ll go from there,” Daboll said. “we have conversations, obviously, but when Darren makes his decision, that’s what we’ll go with.”

Giants: Darren Waller’s retirement decision will come in final week of OTA’s

Waller has been mulling retirement for much of the offseason after playing in 12 games last year. A hamstring injury deprived him of five weeks of action. The 31-year-old has dealt with a bevy of ailments throughout his career and noted that he may not be up for the tough grind of preparing for and competing in an NFL season because “it requires a lot. And if you’re not fully bought into every single thing of the process, it’s going to be tough.”

Jul 26, 2023; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Brian Daboll, right, talks with tight end Darren Waller on the first day of training camp at the Quest Diagnostics Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports
Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants are expecting a decision from Waller by June 1. They have an insurance policy in place with fourth-round pick Theo Johnson ready to see time in the depth chart at TE.

Giants HC Brian Daboll is not putting much into Darius Slayton’s absence from voluntary OTA’s

OTA’s are voluntary and mainly a precursor to training camp. Coach Daboll made sure to stress the optional nature of these preseason workouts when also touching on Slayton’s absence, saying that “if he wants to be here, great,” and that participation is ultimately the prerogative of the player. Slayton is holding out in pursuit of a contract extension, as he approaches the final year of his two-year, $12 million deal.

Giants pass rusher Brian Burns said on the first media day of OTA’s that he deduces nothing about his game from the workouts other than them being an opportunity to get in shape. Slayton and Waller’s presences, should they come between now and the conclusion of OTA’s on June 7, will be a sign that they’ll be active for the Giants in 2024 more than anything else.

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