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Former NFL player D.J. Hayden dies at 33

He played in the National Football League for the Raiders, Lions, Jaguars and Commanders but has been confirmed as one of six dead in Houston after a car accident.

Estados UnidosUpdate:
D.J. Hayden, exjugador de la NFL, falleció a los 33 años

The Houston Police Department has announced the tragic passing of former NFL player D.J. Hayden, who died in a car accident in the early hours of Saturday. Megan Howard, the Deputy Chief of the police department, stated that an SUV collided at high speed with a Chrysler 300 at the intersection of Fannin and Pierce Streets.

Hayden was one of the six individuals who tragically lost their lives in the accident. Among the other victims were former University of Houston players Zachary McMillian and Ralph Oragwu. Jeffrey Lewis, an alumnus of the same university, is currently in recovery.

Raiders issue D.J. Hayden statement

The Raiders, the team with which he spent the majority of his career, issued a statement expressing their sorrow over his passing and stating that they will pray for those who loved Hayden.

“The Raiders Family is mourning the tragic loss of former cornerback D.J. Hayden. The Raiders’ first-round draft pick out of the University of Houston in 2013, D.J. overcame a heart injury sustained in a college practice to play nine years in the NFL, including his first four with the Silver and Black. D.J.’s courage, perseverance, and dedication to his teammates will be fondly remembered by everyone who knew him. The prayers of the entire Raider Nation are with D.J.’s loved ones at this time.”

The NFL career of D.J. Hayden

Following a distinguished college career, Hayden was drafted in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders. After completing his rookie contract, the player signed a one-year deal with the Detroit Lions for the 2017 season. His career took a turn towards Jacksonville, where he spent the 2018, 2019, and 2020 seasons with the Jaguars. The last team he played for was Washington; the University of Houston alum spent the 2021 season with the Commanders.

Throughout his career, Hayden participated in 92 regular-season games, amassing 328 tackles, 46 defended passes, 4.5 sacks, four interceptions, four forced fumbles, three recovered fumbles, and one defensive touchdown.