Hayden no issue playing through pain


ALAMEDA – When you’ve gone through what D.J. Hayden has to make it to this point, a sore hamstring isn’t about to slow you down.
So it was that the Raiders first-round draft pick D.J. Hayden practiced through his injury Saturday and looked none the worse as evidenced by a couple of pass breakups.
“Oh, man, it felt so great just to get back out there, put the helmet back on and just actually be on the field,” said Hayden, a speedy cornerback.
Hayden had a near brush with death last November when he suffered a ruptured vein that feeds blood from his lower body to his heart in a practice at the University of Houston.
Most people die from such an injury, according to medical experts. Some place the fatality rate as high as 95 percent.
Yet, on Saturday Hayden showed no lingering effects from the scary injury.
“I don’t even think about it,” Hayden said of the injury in which a teammate’s knee drilled him in the midsection while defending a pass over the middle. “The only time I think about is when somebody asks me. But when I’m on the field, I don’t think about that. I think about the play and about the coverage that I’m in. I put it past me.”
On one play, Hayden broke on a pass by quarterback Tyler Wilson, reached back and deflected the pass a split second before it arrived at the intended target.
In keeping with his nature, Hayden downplayed the positive and dwelled on what he failed to accomplish.
“When I made the little play, I was happy,” Hayden said. “I should have caught it but there’s always room for improvement.”
The Raiders selected Hayden with the 12 pick of the 2013 NFL draft in late April. General manager Reggie McKenzie said the Raiders were so high on Hayden that they would have used the No. 3 pick on him if they hadn’t have traded down to 12.
Coach Dennis Allen said he has been impressed by Hayden’s play the first two days of the team’s three-day rookie mini camp.
“I’m pleased with where D.J.’s at,” Allen said. “Again, it’s going to be a learning process. It’s putting one foot in front of the other. When it comes time to play games this September I think he’ll be ready to roll.”


Steve Corkran

  • ohioraider

    Gruden has become his own national brand. He has no real incentive to return to the grind.

  • SnBG

    DJ Johnny Says:
    May 11th, 2013 at 5:05 pm
    Myopinion Says:
    May 11th, 2013 at 4:59 pm
    Might not be realistic, and didnt say it would happen, said I could see, why would that be so ridiculous? Does mark know more than him. Is there a face more popular?

    There’s something about seeing that snarl on the sideline again that I find inspirational as a Raider fan and I do think he’s a good coach. I like him, but I don’t think he’s gonna want to leave all that ESPN stuff anytime soon.
    Gruden was great here but he also was lucky to have Gannon. When he went to TB, he had a lot of trouble finding the right QB. He seemed to be impatient with the QB’s he had and the team slowly started going down hill. We’re waxing nostalgic for a coach and a time when the Raiders were good but I don’t think Gruden can bring any magic back to the Raiders.

  • SnBG

    RaiderLen Says:
    May 11th, 2013 at 5:01 pm
    The next question then is WHY and then WHO is gonna fill that role?
    Someone with more experience than Gruden.

  • oldschoolraider

    Gruden has become the NFL’s lap dog.
    Every young QB Is full of potential and has a bright future in the league.
    Every draft pick is a great draft pick.
    You stick your hand in front of Gruden’s face and he licks it, no questions asked.
    He aims to please.

  • NGRaiderfan

    I dont get y they had to put pryor in this article. U talkin about wilson compared o other rookies looked in minicamp? Pryor was suspended for hos irst 6 games he didnt get to go to rookie minicamp and play against other rookies… Playing against other rookies, only a handful that are actually gonna be in the nfl doesnt show anything

  • 1960AutumnWind

    Why they did not give Hayden #24?

    Do you realize who wore 25? The person who is famous for the greatest ball catching skills of all time! And not just for the Oakland Raiders for the entire NFL and College football. The outstanding WR in College football competes for an award with his name on it each year. If he indeed has ball skills that exceed almost any corner that has come out in recent memory, I can think of no better number for him even though that person was on offense – Freddie B.

    If he was to get a number besides #25 I would have loved to see #37 for him, which was the number of a corner that had 16 interceptions in a single season and led the unlikely consumation of a SB victory to a WC team that was an underdog in just about every playoff game they played that year inclduing the SB. He was also a CB who overcame a disability (stuttering) to become someone that should be in the HOF but is currently not in there – Lester Hayes.

    Good summary article of all time great numbers. Raiders should not retire them though as they would have a shortage. That is the kind of history they have.


  • 1960AutumnWind

    ohioraider Says:
    May 11th, 2013 at 5:11 pm
    Gruden has become his own national brand. He has no real incentive to return to the grind.

    Gruden is the new Madden. Wait in a few years it will be Gruden football instead of Madden. The problem is that Gruden does not know how to criticice. He “loves” everything. Everyone is going to make it etc… The beauty of Madden is he could criticise without ticking everyone off but have a dose of reality none the same.

  • MoCheeezmo Crotcheeezbo