His was the injury to a defensive starter that was forgotten because it happened well before the regular season, but losing nickel cornerback Kelvin Hayden to a season-ending hamstring injury in early August was a harbinger of bad things to come for the Bears’ defense.
Now the Bears and Hayden will try again.
Hayden re-signed with the Bears on Friday, to a one-year contract that creates both depth and competition at a position that was a starter for six of 16 games last season. Isaiah Frey filled in last season for Hayden, who played in 16 games for the Bears in 2012, starting two.
Chicago native Hayden — listed at 6 feet, 190 pounds — has started 49 of 101 games played for Indianapolis (2005-10), Atlanta (2011) and Chicago (2012-13) after entering the NFL as a second round pick (60th overall) of the Colts in the 2005 draft. If there is a concern it is that 2012 was the only season in which Hayden has played 16 games in the past six.
Hayden tied for the NFL lead in 2012 with four opponent fumble recoveries. He was also credited with 3 special teams stops.