The star-crossed football career of D.J. Hayden will move to Detroit.
Hayden, a cornerback selected by the Raiders with the 12th overall pick in the 2013 NFL draft, has agreed to terms with the Lions. Adam Caplan of ESPN reports that it’s a one-year deal that could pay him up to $5.25 million.
Presumably Hayden will have to stay healthy to earn anything close to that $5.25 million, and so far in his career staying healthy has not been easy. Hayden is immensely talented, but he has a long history of injuries. During his senior year at the University of Houston, he suffered a life-threatening injury to his heart when he took a hard shot to the chest during practice. Injuries have followed him to the NFL, and in four seasons with the Raiders he has missed 19 games.
Still, Hayden has undeniable talent, which is why he was such a high pick. If Hayden can stay healthy and make the most of his talent, the Lions may have just significantly upgraded their secondary.