The Texans secondary just took a significant hit. On Wednesday, starting cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. injured his hamstring during practice, according to KPRC 2 in Houston. After undergoing an MRI to determine the severity of the injury, Stingley will be sidelined for several weeks and has since been officially placed on injured reserve on Saturday, according to NFL Media.
With Stingley now on IR, he will be sidelined for a minimum of four games before he'd be eligible to return. The Texans are on the road for an AFC South matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 3 and then face the Steelers at home in Week 4, head to Atlanta to face the Falcons in Week 5, and host the Saints in Week 6 before entering their Week 7 bye. So, the earliest the Texans could see him return to a game is Week 8 when they travel to face the Carolina Panthers.
The Texans selected Stingley with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft out of LSU. He appeared in nine games as a rookie but was put on the shelf after Week 9 after suffering a leg injury against the Giants. When he was on the field, Stingley flashed his potential with five pass breakups, an interception, and 43 total tackles. He also didn't allow a single touchdown as a rookie and opposing quarterbacks registered a 78.4 passer rating when targeting him.
Through two games this season, Stingley has nine tackles and allowed an 83.3 passer rating when targeted.
According to this report from KPRC 2 Houston, veteran corner Shaq Griffin is expected to be his primary replacement. Griffin signed with the Texans this offseason and has six years of prior NFL experience under his belt. He was a third-round pick of the Seattle Seahawks and was named to the Pro Bowl in 2019. Over the previous two seasons, Griffin was lurking in Jacksonville's secondary and had four pass breakups in five games last year before being placed on IR with a back injury.