NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — New York Giants top running back David Wilson needs neck surgery and his future in football is uncertain.
Giants general manager Jerry Reese disclosed the news Thursday during a radio interview with WFAN in New York City.
New York’s first-round draft pick in 2012, Wilson was hurt on Oct. 6 after being tackled coming out of his own end zone in a home game against Philadelphia.
Wilson will have a fusion of the vertebrae to repair the herniated disc in his neck. The procedure will be performed by Dr. Frank Cammisa at the Hospital of Special Surgery on Jan. 16.
“You have to look at him differently, because he’s got the whole neck issue hovering over him right now,” Reese said. “So he’s got to come back and be healthy, No. 1. He’s planning to have surgery, and we’ll see how that comes out. Our medical staff feels like he’ll be ready to play this fall, but the neck and back — that’s pretty tricky. So you never know.”
Wilson played five games this past season. He was eventually put on season-ending injured reserve Nov. 7.
Wilson finished with 44 carries for 146 yards and a touchdown. He caught two passes for 8 yards and had nine kickoff returns for a 24.7-yard average.
“Jason Pierre-Paul had a back (injury), and he was just a shell of what he was a couple years ago,” Reese added. “So those things can be pretty tricky. So I think you can’t go into the season saying, ‘Well, David, he’ll be healthy and ready to go.’ We saw in the preseason a couple times he can be a dynamic player and he can be a dynamic kick returner and you can throw a short pass to him and he can make a big play with it. But right now, we’re just trying to get him healthy and get him back out there. That’s what’s most important for us right now, to get him healthy.”
Giants chief executive John Mara hopes Wilson can play again.
“Time will tell on that one,” said added, also being interviewed by WFAN.
Wilson had 1,925 all-purpose yards as a rookie, the sixth-highest total in team history, the most ever by a Giants rookie and the most for any Giant since Tiki Barber had 2,127 in 2006. His 1,533 kickoff return yards led the NFL and set a Giants record, breaking the former mark of 1,291 set by Domenik Hixon in 2009. Wilson’s 26.9-yard kickoff return average was sixth in the NFL. He also rushed for 358 yards and four touchdowns and caught four passes for 34 yards and a score.