After the Oakland Raiders took D.J. Hayden in the first round, a pick NFL.com correspondents referred to as the one that shocked the world, all eyes (at least those that follow the NFL) were watching to see if the risk would yield some kind of reward. The risk related to Hayden involves an injury he suffered while playing in college, a ruptured vena cava, an injury that has a high fatality rate:
[Oakland Raiders coach Dennis] Allen said he isn’t sure whether there’s any correlation between Hayden’s current situation and the ruptured vein Hayden suffered last November during a practice at the University of Houston.
“We can’t rule that out, obviously, but right now I don’t know exactly what the correlation is to it,” Allen said. “But we don’t anticipate it being an issue.”
Hayden underwent surgery to repair the ruptured vena cava, which supplies blood to the heart from the lower body. He was cleared by doctors to resume football activities last month after surviving an injury that is 95 percent fatal, by some accounts.
With that in mind, it’s easy to see why Hayden’s health is of concern to football fans, and when news about Hayden having to be hospitalized because of abdominal pain, thoughts about lingering complications surfaced, which culminated when Hayden sent following tweet:
My stomach hurt so bad right now
— DJ Hayden (@_Go_DJ_) May 21, 2013
A spokesperson for the Oakland Raiders indicates Hayden underwent a procedure to remove scar tissue from his abdominal area, and according to teammates, the rookie is feeling progressing just fine:
[Safety Usama] Young said he has communicated with Hayden via text message and that Hayden said he is doing “a lot better.”
If you’re curious as to why the Raiders spent such a high pick on someone with such a medical history, the following highlight reel does a great job of identifying Hayden’s strengths, which, provided he can remain healthy, should benefit the moribund Raiders franchise: