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D.J. Hayden expected to debut in third preseason game

D.J. Hayden AP

The Raiders won’t have first-round cornerback D.J. Hayden in the lineup against the Cowboys on Friday night and he won’t play a week from Friday against the Saints either.

That was the word from Raiders General Manager Reggie McKenzie, who said that Hayden is slated to see his first game action when the Raiders host the Bears on August 23. Hayden is still wearing a red no-contact jersey after having abdominal surgery in the spring that was related to the near-fatal heart injury that ended his final season at the University of Houston, which means that he’s had a long stretch without full participation in football. McKenzie thinks getting back into the right frame of mind will be Hayden’s biggest stumbling block.

“It’s the mental part,” McKenzie said, via Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. “He’s going to have to pull the trigger on some things, get the big hit, make plays, he’ll be back to normal mentally. Physically, he’s already there. His weight is right back, his strength, he’s been normal. I’m excited to have him. It’s going to be interesting because people are still going to wonder, how good is he? Let him show some people.”

McKenzie had praise for several other members of the draft class, but their rebuilding effort would take a major blow if Hayden isn’t able to recover the form that he showed before his injury last year. McKenzie’s confident that he will and the rest of us will start finding out in a couple of weeks.

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14 Responses to “D.J. Hayden expected to debut in third preseason game”
  1. sttbm says: Aug 9, 2013 2:17 PM

    As a life-long Seahawks fan, I have never loved to hate a team as much as the Raiders (and many of their obnoxious/rude/stoopud fans). That said, things are different now that Seattle hasnt been in the AFC West in ages, Al is gone, and guys like McKenzie–whom I respect–are in charge.

    And DJ Haden’s story is crazy. I wish him the best, and I hope he completely recovers from his injury and has a great career.

    Same for Matt Flynn, who pretty much got the shaft from Carrol and company.

  2. shadowcell says: Aug 9, 2013 2:32 PM

    There’s always a big psychological block when you come back from an injury, in which you’re kind of afraid to do what led to the injury in the first place, in case it happens again. And in his case, it almost killed him. So here’s hoping Hayden can make a proper comeback.

  3. dante170 says: Aug 9, 2013 2:43 PM

    One more wasted first round pick. When will this organization learn from it’s past mistakes.

    To think this organization was once a dominant franchise. Boggles the mind…

  4. raiderufan says: Aug 9, 2013 2:44 PM

    I 100% support this approach and fully understand if Hayden is frustrated….the kid SHOULD be dead. Not could, should.

    He’ll have his time. Get the mental part of understanding his responsibilties and the others around him down and then start full contact. Slow but sure. He’ll be fine for week one and if he isn’t it’s still ok. Jenkins and Porter can hold it down for a few weeks.

    My main thing is getting him on the field with Woodson AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE! This kid is impressive and if willing to learn has one of the best ever back there to help. Hitting will happen, just not yet.

  5. somethingsmellsrotten says: Aug 9, 2013 2:48 PM

    A little too early to say it’s a wasted pick there dante170…let the kid play some frickin’ games first, then you can open your piehole.

  6. charmcitychampions says: Aug 9, 2013 3:08 PM

    Great story on this kid. Unfortunately he shouldn’t have been a 1st round pick. But as we know if you run a great 40 time, some idiot will overdraft you and then you need to live up to the expectations of a 1st rounder. I wish nothing but the best for the kid, but his talent vs the rest of the draft….he should have been a 2nd or 3rd rounder. The expectations on him are over his ability.

  7. raiderfanatic4life says: Aug 9, 2013 3:23 PM

    Wow, can believe how ignorant some people are leaving stupid post like “another waisted pick” down playing Hayden. They have made it clear since they drafted him that he will not be ready right away, but he will return to form 100% by week 1. That has always been the goal with Hayden.

    Also, numnuts…. This is not AL Davis picking speed over want, this is Reggie Mcenzie making selections who will shock the world because that’s what he’s known for. The man is a football genius. Said it before and ill say it again. Hayden was the best corner back in college football last year and will be one of if not the best in the NFL.

    Can’t wait till all the nay Sayers look foolish when the raiders wake them up.

    Talent depleted my ass. This team is stacked with talent, and finally the right coaches to put the pieces together.

  8. oakfolk says: Aug 9, 2013 3:26 PM

    @charmcitychampions, see “somethingsmellsrotten” comment and adhere to it!

  9. williamwallacewouldhavebeenaraider says: Aug 9, 2013 3:33 PM

    dante170 says:
    Aug 9, 2013 2:43 PM
    One more wasted first round pick. When will this organization learn from it’s past mistakes.

    To think this organization was once a dominant franchise. Boggles the mind…
    ——————————————————-
    Hey every team has its ups and downs and the Raiders have definitely been o the downside for a decade now. People easily forget that the Giants were so bad at one point that they NFL had to step in and appoint a GM Young and that the Packers were atrocious for quite some time. The Silver and Black will rise

  10. oakfolk says: Aug 9, 2013 3:48 PM

    @Raiderfanatic4life, except D-line. That position group worries me honestly. The preseason games will tell us a lot.

  11. radrntn says: Aug 9, 2013 3:52 PM

    Look back at the draft

    1st rd pick -DJ Hayden – injured
    2nd rd pick – Menelik Watson – injured
    3rd pick -Sio Moore – jury is out
    4th pick – Tyler Wilson – benched / way behind

    Lets go Raiders!

  12. johnstone17 says: Aug 9, 2013 4:12 PM

    @Oakfolk. Based on the injuries on the D-line, will we get to see anything yet?

  13. oakfolk says: Aug 9, 2013 4:25 PM

    After preseason game 4, we’ll know how good or bad our dline/pass rush/run defense will be. I think Reggie knew he couldn’t fix everything in one offseason and was hoping to get by with bargain players on the dline until next year’s draft and free agency when he can put that $40-$50 mil in salary cap to good use towards defensive linemen.

    #longsentencebutnotarun-onsentence

  14. joetoves1 says: Aug 11, 2013 5:46 PM

    to the person who said that Flynn got the shaft from Carol and his boys up in Seattle. Why can’t U acknowledge that he was giving all the chance in the world to be a starter, he was also the better of the 2.
    I hope they were wrong about him! This way he will be the Raiders franchise quarterback for years to come. I am a Pryor fan to begin with and hope he beats Flynn sometime this year. I think he will. What is your take on that subject?

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