Peyton Hillis sprains ankle at Giants practice

AP

The Giants won’t have running back David Wilson this season, leaving them without a player who was slated for a sizable role in the offense if he was healthy this season.

As co-owner John Mara recently pointed out, the Giants planned for this eventuality but another significant injury could force them to scour the free agent market for more help at the position. That makes Peyton Hillis’ exit from Tuesday’s practice with a sprained ankle a bit more meaningful than an injury to a backup running back might be on other teams.

Conor Orr of the Newark Star-Ledger reports that Hillis’ injury “is not believed to be a serious issue,” but there’s no firm timeline for his expected return to the lineup from an injury that can linger even if it doesn’t create immediate worries for the team. Hillis has had hamstring problems throughout his career and battled a quad injury this spring, so there’s some reason for concern about how quickly he’ll be able to bounce back.

Rashad Jennings is the starter for the Giants and Andre Williams had an encouraging debut in the Hall of Fame Game, but an extended absence for Hillis would leave the relatively inexperienced Michael Cox and totally inexperienced Kendall Gaskins as the candidates for the third spot on the depth chart if the Giants don’t make any other moves.