ALAMEDA -- Cornerback DJ Hayden missed another practice Monday, and it's conceivable that his right ankle injury won't be healed well enough for him to return until training camp starts.

"It's hard to tell," Raiders coach Dennis Allen said. "Initially I was hopeful of (a quick return). Hopefully we'll have him out here, because he needs the work."

Hayden missed most of last season's offseason workouts while he recovered from a surgery late in his final collegiate season and a follow-up surgery in late May.

He also wasn't permitted to participate in contact drills in the early days of training camp. A groin injury limited Hayden to eight regular-season games.

Oakland Raiders’ defensive back DJ Hayden (25) works out at the team’s Alameda, Calif., headquarters, Tuesday, May 27, 2014. (D. Ross
Oakland Raiders' defensive back DJ Hayden (25) works out at the team's Alameda, Calif., headquarters, Tuesday, May 27, 2014. (D. Ross Cameron/Bay Area News Group) ( D. ROSS CAMERON )

Hayden, Oakland's 2013 first-round draft pick, appeared well on his way to competing for a starting spot before he hurt his ankle in a practice late last month.

He even joked about how excited he was about making it through the first organized team activity without any setbacks and limitations.

Now he's limited to watching from the sidelines as his teammates gear up for the start of training camp in late July.

The Raiders lost both their starting cornerbacks from last season -- Mike Jenkins and Tracy Porter -- to free agency. They signed veterans Carlos Rogers and Tarell Brown as potential replacements.

Ideally, the Raiders want Brown and Hayden as the starters, with Rogers playing inside against slot receivers in the nickel package.


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As Allen said, Hayden needs plenty of on-field work to fulfill his part of the equation.

Fortunately for the Raiders and Hayden, there's still enough time for Hayden to earn a starting job.

Other Raiders unable to practice at full strength Monday were wide receiver James Jones (hamstring) and backup guard Lucas Nix.

Defensive end Justin Tuck, linebacker Kevin Burnett and defensive lineman Anthony Smith did not attend practice.

Follow Steve Corkran on Twitter at twitter.com/CorkOnTheNFL.