Editor’s note: This is the second part in a series that spotlights three Raiders-Broncos matchups to watch Sunday, 1:25 p.m., at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.
Raiders CB DJ Hayden vs. Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders
Tale of the tape:
Hayden (25): 5-foot-11, 190 pounds, second season, Houston
Sanders (10): 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, fifth season, Southern Methodist
The Raiders are entering Sunday’s matchup with Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning incredibly thin at cornerback. The Raiders will need Herculean efforts from their healthy corners to quell Denver’s pass-happy attack.
That includes second-year pro DJ Hayden, who must play his best against talented receiver Emmanuel Sanders. He’s had an excellent year thus far, with 95 receptions for 1,331 yards and nine touchdowns. He was on point in his last game, with six catches for 70 yards and two TDs.
Hayden allowed a touchdown to Sanders in this year’s previous meeting, but he also intercepted a pass intended for the fifth-year veteran.
Hayden has tremendous respect for Sanders, but believes playing against him before should aid Sunday’s performance.
“It helps when you know a receiver’s tendencies and what they like to do,” Hayden said. “Experience is always more valuable than just watching tape. The Broncos have some talented receivers. We need to be at our best against them.”