Standing 5’11 and weighing approximately 195 pounds, Joe Haden isn’t necessarily the most dominant presence on paper. However, the former seventh pick of the 2010 NFL Draft inherits a trait that cannot be quantified but merely admired – and that’s his heart. Facing perennial talents each and every week by his lonesome, his ascension into the elite legion of defensive backs within the NFL is rather impressive, as Joe continues to make the notion of “quiet confidence” unequivocally accurate.
With the news breaking over the weekend of Haden joining the impeccable Jordan Brand lineage, this day in time marked a win for sneakerheads across the country as one of our own reached in many ways the pinnacle of the industry.
At times the sneaker culture can be chauvinistic. Built upon the idea of showcasing scarce items ad nauseum then bragging about how “fortunate” or “connected” you are to procure said item. This narrative has grown to exponential levels with the presence of social media and with Haden’s access and status within the industry he has every reason to be a part of the aforementioned affliction – but he’s not. Despite owning his own retail boutique in Cleveland – adequately named The Restock.
In fact, Haden is a sneakerhead within the purest form, happily posting pictures and procuring levels of sneakers that reach obsessive heights and something his wife surely has instructed Haden to slow down on. But considering her well versed kick game, this couple may be the best thing in sneakers.
From his array of Air Jordans, Nike Basketball and Reebok staples, Haden has provided consistent and stellar footwear, that mostly resembles his NFL career thus far – seemingly arriving at the pinnacle of the game with little fanfare. Sneakerheads across the country should embrace that because his journey is no different than ours, as he remained passionate to an industry and culture, only to find his way to what many consider to be the pinnacle of sneakers and that’s Michael Jordan.
Aside from his eclectic and well-versed collection, Haden’s generosity makes him someone to root for as well, as his kind spirit has been documented within this ESPN feature. In addition, Haden has adopted the city of Cleveland seemingly as his own, despite being born and raised in Maryland. It’s worth noting that Haden arrived in Cleveland during 2010, a time in which “The Land” was more like “The Exodus.”
Much like any sneakerheads, Joe has had some misses as well, such as with his custom Gucci Air Jordan 4s that plenty of sneakerheads gave him grief over. However, instances like those remain few and far between. Going forward, it’ll be interesting to witness how Joe’s arrival with the Jordan Brand will materialize.
Could a signature shoe happen? Or will some of the greatest PEs arrive in the decadent “Cleveland Orange” hue?
Nonetheless, Joe making the transition over to the Jordan Brand is a big victory for sneakerheads because he is merely one of us.
His stature makes him seem accessible, his generosity provides us clarity and his talent lends us admiration.
Sometimes, as a media member, it’s best to remain unbiased. However, Joe makes it incredibly tough to root against him.