The first NFL preseason game for the Oakland Raiders will be played on Friday night at O.co Coliseum in the Bay Area against the Dallas Cowboys with rookie cornerback D.J. Hayden forced to watch from the sidelines.
Hayden will miss the first preseason game for the Raiders due to a hamstring injury sustained during training camp according to NFL.com:
Oakland Raiders first-round draft pick D.J. Hayden will not play in Friday’s preseason opener against the Dallas Cowboys. Hayden suffered a slight hamstring pull in training camp on Monday but Oakland coach Dennis Allen said the decision to hold the rookie cornerback out was related to Hayden’s recovery from offseason abdominal surgery.
With the 12th pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, the Raiders’ front office decided to roll the dice on Hayden. Although Hayden came with a fair share of injury concerns with the Houston product coming fresh off surgery that may have cost him his life back in November.
Hayden was rushed to the hospital after a collision in practice after suffering a slight tear in the inferior vena cava. The injury was so severe that his life was literally on the line with 95 percent fatality rate.
As of right now, Hayden sits behind veteran corner Mike Jenkins on the depth chart and will have his work cut out for him to make an impression competing against the veterans in the secondary. Losing an opportunity to play in one of the four preseason games could prove to be costly for Hayden’s playing time if unable to turn heads in the final three games before the start of the regular season.