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D.J. Hayden missed two recent practices with a hamstring strain, but returned on Monday in a red jersey. (USA TODAY IMAGES)
Cornerback D.J. Hayden will make his Raiders debut at home on Aug. 23 against the Chicago Bears. (USA TODAY IMAGES)
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NAPA – Raiders coach Dennis Allen ruled cornerback D.J. Hayden out of Friday’s preseason game against the New Orleans Saints, but followed up with positive news.
The Raiders first-round pick should be cleared for contact on Friday, which would put him in line to play the preseason’s second half.
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“We’ll re-evaluate with the doctors again after he’s been cleared,” Allen said after Monday’s practice, “but the plan is that he’ll be up and going by the Chicago game.”
Hayden will make his Raiders debut at home on Aug. 23, a long-awaited happening delayed by offseason abdominal surgery. Allen said Hayden’s heart issues stemming from a November practice accident at the University of Houston are behind him.
He missed two recent practices with a hamstring strain, but returned on Monday in the red non-contact jersey he’s worn since the beginning of camp.
When the Raiders return to practice on Sunday following the Saints game, it will be black.
While he’ll finally practice fully, Hayden won’t be given first-team status. Hayden remains behind after missing practice and games with injury, so he won’t challenge starting cornerbacks Tracy Porter and Mike Jenkins right away. He’s not in the mix at nickelback, meaning he'll have work his way into the starting lineup over time.