Raiders almost took D.J. Hayden with the third pick

According to Michael Silver of Yahoo! Sports, the Oakland Raiders were two minutes away from drafting cornerback D.J. Hayden with the third overall pick.    Right before they pulled the trigger, the Dolphins called them to trade up to nab Dion Jordan.

The Raiders ultimately took a risk by trading down, but they were still able to get Hayden.

When Oakland Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie dealt the third overall selection to the Miami Dolphins, then sweated out nine picks before landing Houston cornerback D.J. Hayden, the scouts and coaches in the team’s war room championed the move with far less certainty than their Niners counterparts.

The rebuilding Raiders, after all, may have more needs than any NFL team, and Hayden was hardly an obvious pick: Given that he hasn’t played a down of football since suffering a near-death experience after a freak practice collision last November, he is somewhat of a medical risk.

And given that Hayden, as one Raiders source put it, “was taken that high in exactly zero mock drafts,” there didn’t seem to be much danger of him being snatched up by another team selecting in the top 11.

The fact that McKenzie came within two minutes of using the No. 3 pick on Hayden – before the Dolphins (seeking Oregon defensive end Dion Jordan) called to save the day, making the deal that gave Oakland its second-round selection – made for some tense moments in the war room.