First, there was the headline that San Francisco 49ers defensive end Cassius Marsh remembered watching quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo shred the first-team defense during Marsh's brief time with the New England Patriots. Then, there was the headline that Marsh hated playing for the Patriots and was desperate to get out of New England.

"They asked me to do a bunch of stuff that I had never done: covering running backs and receivers and basically almost never rushing the passer, which is what I did in playing defensive line," Marsh told Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle. "They don't have fun there. There's nothing fun about it. There's nothing happy about it. I didn't enjoy any of my time there, you know what I'm saying? It made me for the first time in my life think about not playing football because I hated it that much."

Over the past few days, Marsh's comments about the atmosphere in New England have been analyzed at length by the national media – to the point of reporters asking several Patriots players about them on Thursday.

Unhappy with his situation, Marsh confronted Patriots head coach Bill Belichick in November with hopes of moving on from New England.

"And so I, basically, without asking to get cut, I kind of asked to get cut," he said.

Belichick and the Patriots obliged and waived Marsh on November 21, 2017. The 49ers put in a claim for the defensive player and shortly after, he was headed to Santa Clara. The 49ers had just one win at the time. The Cleveland Browns were winless, so they were higher up in the waiver-claim order. Had they put in a claim for Marsh, he would have been headed to Cleveland instead of San Francisco.

Branch published the full interview on Thursday and revealed that Marsh was hoping to land with the 49ers after being waived by the Patriots.

"I knew where the 49ers were at (in the waiver-claim order)," Marsh said. "I was aiming. I was shooting. God looked after me, and I was able to come where I felt I belonged. God always has a plan, and I feel like I went through what I went through there for a reason. It helped me appreciate where I came from because I used to do a lot of complaining about my situation in Seattle. And most importantly it helps me appreciate where I am today.

"So as much as I didn't enjoy it, I think it was necessary, and I think it was blessing in disguise for me. And I think I'm where I'm supposed to be now."

The 49ers immediately gave Marsh an opportunity to prove himself on the football field, which is something he appreciated. In February, the 49ers rewarded Marsh with a new two-year deal to remain with the team.

"I absolutely wanted to come back," Marsh told Branch. "I saw this as an opportunity to find a home. And so I tried to take best advantage of that as I could. And it worked out, man. I couldn't have been happier with the chance to come back here and have the opportunity to do something I've wanted to do for a long time -- become a starter."

Marsh's goals aren't limited to just becoming a starter for the 49ers. He wants to be a dominant pass rusher who fans remember for years to come.

"My goals have always been to be one of the best rushers in the league and to make my name one of those names that people talk about in the Hall of Fame," Marsh continued. "My first four years, it was looking bleak for a multitude of reasons. But I'm not the type of person to give up on my goals. I know my potential."

You can read Branch's full transcript from his interview with Marsh here.