It was a result that nobody expected when Raiders head coach Dennis Allen told the media that cornerback DJ Hayden’s foot injury “wasn’t a concern” in OTA’s when the 2013 first round pick went out with what was initially diagnosed as a rolled ankle but has now turned out to be a stress fracture that will make Hayden miss this first six games of the 2014 season.
Multiple media outlets reported that Hayden will be placed on the PUP (Physically Unable to Play) list to start his season, taking the cautionary approach to Hayden’s recovery to ensure that when he does come back that he will be at less risk to injure his foot again by coming back too soon.
Raiders are placing 2013 first-round pick, CB D.J. Hayden, on PUP due to foot injury that has kept him out of camp, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 26, 2014
Raiders CB D.J. Hayden — 2013 first-round pick — to start season on PUP list http://t.co/bo2ksPQ8dh
— NFL: AroundTheLeague (@NFL_ATL) August 26, 2014
It is unsure about whether or not Hayden would have been able to return earlier than he will now that he is on the PUP, but it is likely as the Raiders are going to take the cautionary approach here. There is really no sense in trying to rush back Hayden, already getting labelled as “injury prone,” when the Raiders have a lot invested in the 2013 first rounder including the job of general manager Reggie McKenzie who is under fire more and more each day for this selection. The jury is still out on Hayden, and nobody should be calling him a bust before his second season even begins, but there are large pockets of the football world starting to write off this 2013 selection as another first round miss. Fair or not.