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Brandon Marshall vs. Joe Haden by the Numbers

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Defensive strategy for cornerback deployment varies by coach and by defensive scheme. Some defenses assign a side of the field to a cornerback. One cornerback goes to the left side on almost every snap and matches up with whichever receiver comes that way. Other defenses dictate matchups. A cornerback is assigned to one specific receiver and lines up wherever that receiver goes.

There isn't a defense in the league that does either 100% of the time, but many skew to one strategy over the other. As you likely remember, Browns head coach Mike Pettine is a disciple of Rex Ryan. Pettine was defensive coordinator when the Jets had Darrelle Revis shadow the top receivers in the league in 2009. The strategy was altered after the trade for Antonio Cromartie a bit. The Jets started pitting Cromartie against receivers his style matched up well against. Revis took the other guy.

In the Football Outsiders 2015 Almanac, they studied each team's cornerback deployment last season. Pettine's Browns had their cornerbacks stick to one side less than any team in the league. The Browns were only one of three defenses that did this less than Todd Bowles' Cardinals defense. (The Patriots featuring Revis were another.) Pettine likes to dictate matchups so it would not be a surprise to see Brandon Marshall get a heavy dose of Joe Haden in his Jets debut. Haden is one of the top cover corners in the sport.

With this in mind, I wanted to take a look at how Marshall and Haden have fared when they played each other in the past. They have met twice in their respective careers. A hamstring injury kept Marshall out of a 2010 Dolphins-Browns game that would have been a third matchup.

Week 3 2011: Dolphins at Browns

Marshall vs. Haden: 3 for 6; 28 yards; 9.3 yards per reception; 4.6 yards per target

Marshall vs. others: 1 for 1; 15 yards; 15 yards per reception; 15 yards per target

Haden vs. others: 1 for 1; 8 yards; 8 yards per reception allowed; 8 yards per target against

Marshall: 40 routes run

Haden: 41 cover snaps

This was a game where Marshall was held well under his average of 75.8 yards per game in 2011. It also seems like the Browns really limited Marshall's opportunities. He only saw 25% of Miami's targets, opposed to a hair under 40% for the 2011 season. Game flow was no issue. It was a 17-16 Browns win decided in the fourth quarter. Marshall was on the injury report that week with a groin injury and was listed as probable. He did not miss a game that season, though.

Week 15 2013: Bears at Browns

Marshall vs. Haden: 4 for 6; 61 yards; 1 TD; 15.2 yards per reception; 10.1 yards per target

Marshall vs. others: 2 for 6; 34 yards; 17 yards per reception; 5.6 yards per target

Haden vs. others: 1 for 1; 8 yards; 8 yards per reception allowed; 8 yards per target against

Marshall was having a very nice year with the Bears in 2013, and he had success in this one. Haden was not able to establish dominance.

Based on their past matchups, it looks like both guys have had their moments.

*All stats taken from Pro Football Focus; some numbers further crunched.