Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Hayden a big presence in nickel spot
By Jeff Dickerson
CHICAGO -- One defensive adjustment the Chicago Bears made on Monday night was to incorporate veteran cornerback Kelvin Hayden into their nickel package. With Charles Tillman shadowing Detroit’s star wideout, Calvin Johnson, all over the field, Hayden gave the Bears a better option to play outside at cornerback when the team was in nickel and Tillman was forced to cover the 6-foot-5 Johnson in the slot.
Hayden started 47 regular-season and five postseason games at cornerback since he entered the league in 2005.
"I really didn't ask questions behind it," Hayden said. "I knew I was going to get a little more reps but they didn't say how many. I think I played pretty well. I was on the details. I had one little catch on me that I could have done a better job on but I think everything was good."
Although Hayden played significant snaps in the 13-7 victory, the Bears' normal starting nickel back, D.J. Moore, still saw the field, but primarily on third downs.
"It was a personnel thing,” Moore said. “They didn't want Calvin Johnson to slam me and then run a slant route and be running in the end zone. So it was just one of those things."
Despite limited playing time, Moore did record his second interception of the year when he picked off Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford late in the fourth quarter. The two share a history as Moore and Stafford got into a fight on the field last year at Solider Field which resulted in both players getting fined and Moore being ejected from the Bears win.
Moore said he did not speak to Stafford before or after the game to iron out their differences.
"Nah, but we never talked before," Moore said. "As long as I keep playing him, my career interceptions will keep going up."
Moore now has 10 interceptions over the last two-plus seasons. The former fourth-round pick out of Vanderbilt is in the final year of his original rookie contract and is scheduled to reach free agency next offseason.