Bears cornerback Kelvin Hayden, who signed a one-year deal in the offseason to return to Chicago, tore his hamstring and will be out for the season, according to Stacey Dales on Twitter.
Hayden, 30, was a second-round pick for the Colts in 2005 and spent six years with Indianapolis before signing with the Atlanta Falcons in 2011. His first-career interception, which he returned for a touchdown, came in the Colts' championship win against the Bears in Super Bowl XLI. He signed with Chicago last year and recovered four fumbles for a defense that led the league in turnovers.
While Charles Tillman and Tim Jennings get most of the attention at cornerback for the Bears, Hayden was counted on for important veteran depth and special teams play. Hayden was in on 44 percent of the team's defensive snaps and 18 percent of special teams plays, according to Football Outsiders,
The Bears will now have to look elsewhere for that presence.
In Chicago's first depth chart, Hayden was listed as the backup to Tillman, with sixth-year pro Zack Bowman also on the second string. Bowman recorded just 11 tackles last year. Next in line are second-year pro Isaiah Frey, who spent last year on the practice squad, and fourth-year player Sherrick McManis.
Like Bowman, McManis was on the team last year but did not get much playing time. One of these players will need to step up before the season starts to fill the void left by Hayden.