Five years ago, Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie took a huge gamble by taking cornerback DJ Hayden with the 12th pick of the draft. Hayden had suffered a torn vein that is responsible for bringing blood from the lower half of the body back to the heart, and nearly died, during his final collegiate season.
Steve has covered the Raiders in some capacity since their return to Oakland in 1995. He was the full-time beat writer from 1997-2010. for the Contra Costa Times, Oakland Tribune and San Jose Mercury News and covered more than 400 NFL games, including four Super Bowls. He also is the co-author of a recently released book titled "Al Davis: Behind the Raiders Shield."