D.J. Hayden Injury: Updates on Raiders Rookie's Abdomen

Tyler ConwayFeatured ColumnistMay 28, 2013

The inspiring story of Oakland Raiders first-round pick D.J. Hayden's return to the football field has taken an unfortunate turn.  

According to a report from ESPN's NFL Twitter feed, Hayden will miss the remainder of organized team activities after being sent to the hospital with an abdominal injury:

UPDATE: Wednesday, May 29 at 6:37 p.m. ET by Kyle Vassalo

D.J. Hayden has been released from the hospital, according to Vic Tafur of SFGate.com:

---End of Update---

ESPN's NFL insider Adam Schefter tweeted further details of Hayden's situation and noted the rookie corner should be ready for the start of training camp:

According to CSN Bay Area's Nate Stuhlbarg, the injury was discovered "Tuesday or Wednesday of last week," and Hayden was in the hospital with the opening of Tuesday's OTAs. 

Hayden was a participant in the team's first OTA and is expected to make a full recovery by the time the Raiders open their training camp session on July 29.    

Oakland, after trading back from the third overall selection in a deal with the Miami Dolphins, drafted Hayden with the No. 12 overall selection in April's draft. The Raiders' selection of the Houston cornerback came as a surprise to many and was viewed as a massive risk—especially considering Hayden's scary injury history.

Before his senior year with the Cougars, Hayden took a knee to the chest in practice and suffered a tear to the inferior vena cava—a large vein that carries blood to the heart from the lower half of the body, per ESPN.com.

The injury has a "95 percent" fatality rate, according to Houston team doctor Dr. Walter Lowe (via ESPN.com). Hayden underwent an emergency procedure to fix the ailment and was cleared by doctors to resume football activities last month, according to Steve Corkran of the San Jose Mercury News

For Hayden, whose story provided inspiration for many during the NFL draft process, this news has to be frustrating. When he took the field for the Raiders' minicamp, he expressed glee to be back on the football field. 

"It felt so great just to be out there, to put the helmet back on and actually be back on the field," Hayden said (per Reuters, h/t Chicago Tribune).

For now, there is no word on whether this injury is related to the heart condition. Raiders head coach Dennis Allen spoke with the San Francisco Chronicle and said that nothing has been ruled out at this time. 

“We can’t rule that out,” Allen said. “Right now, I don’t know the correlation to it, but we don’t anticipate it being an issue.”


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