Giants rookie tight end needs eye surgery after freak injury vs Jaguars
New York Giants Rookie tight end Daniel Bellinger will be missing some time after a freak injury Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars required him to undergo eye surgery.
Head coach Brian Daboll, who is coming off his sixth win with his new team in seven games, had to speak of numerous injuries, including Bellinger and fellow rookie Evan Neal, after Sunday’s game. But in Bellinger’s case, Daboll said he was going to need eye surgery after a Jaguars player fractured his eye socket and septum.
Bellinger grabbed and started running after landing a first down, but as one Jaguars defender went for his legs, the other went high and found his hand in the tight end’s face shield. Bellinger immediately grabbed his eye and blood was seen on his gloves before the coaches got to him.
The San Diego State product was rushed to hospital for treatment of the injury. Bellinger’s father, Frank, posted a photo of the injury, and you can see the Jaguars defender’s hand poking through the face mask.
“I couldn’t tell you 100%,” Daboll told reporters Monday of Bellinger’s impaired vision after the surgery. “I think they will do the operation, I’m optimistic. But as for going into detail, I couldn’t answer that.”
Daboll added that it’s “probably too early to say when I expect him back,” but it’s not believed to be a season-ending injury for the fourth-round pick.
“We’ll see how it goes, and I’m hopeful, but obviously you never know when things like that happen.”
Bellinger was a real role player in his first season in the NFL, with the Giants using him to block and pass concepts that required him to step up and play.
One came last week when Daniel Jones ran over and threw the ball to Bellinger, who used his entire 6-foot-6 frame to get up and score his second career touchdown against the Baltimore Ravens. It was a crucial fourth-quarter touchdown that ultimately led to an upset victory for the Giants.
With Bellinger running out of time, Daboll will rely on his other tight ends: Tanner Hudson and Chris Myarick.
“I think whenever one of your best players gets injured you always miss them, but that’s why you have players on the roster,” he said. “People are here for a reason; we’ve said that before. We have to find a way to use our plays in the best possible way. We have two tight ends; we have one in the practice squad and we will try to do our best to use their strengths.”
Bellinger was considered a bit of a developmental draft by the Giants when general manager Joe Schoen and his team called his name in the fourth round in April. But he quickly clung to the attack and had its effect.
In seven games, Bellinger caught 16 passes on 18 targets for 152 yards and two touchdowns, his first tally at MetLife Stadium against the Carolina Panthers on a 16-yard catch-and-run.
The Giants will be looking to push their winning streak to five games on the road this week against another NFL surprise this season: the Seattle Seahawks.