Is Myles Garrett already an elite pass rusher?
By Thomas Moore
Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett has yet to play a down of NFL football, but he is already being listed among the league’s best pass rushers.
The Cleveland Browns do not play a game that matters until the season opener on Sept. 10 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
If everything goes right, that day will also mark the debut of defensive end Myles Garrett, who the Browns made the No. 1 overall selection in the 2017 NFL Draft.
But even though he has not done anything other than participate in some drills with the Browns, Garrett is already drawing attention as potentially one of the league’s top pass rushers.
In fact, Garrett is already among the league’s top five edge rushers, according to Matt Williamson at Fan Rag Sports, who puts Garrett on par with Von Miller of the Denver Broncos, Ezekiel Ansah of the Detroit Lions and Robert Quinn of the Los Angeles Rams:
"The most recent first overall draft pick obviously has yet to play a snap in the NFL, but in terms of talent, he takes a backseat to no one. This is a rare prospect coming out of college who would warrant consideration for the first overall pick any year. Garrett has it all."
"His technique could use some work and surely that will come, but that isn’t what we are talking about here. We are talking about talent, and wow does Garrett have ability. He is big. He is powerful. He is explosive. He changes directions very well. He plays with leverage and knee bend. He has a great body for playing the edge. Not only does Garrett have all of these traits, but he also has all of them at a level that few in the league can compare with. As stated before, Garrett has it all."
Pretty impressive company for a player who has yet to take a snap at the NFL level.
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Garrett’s offseason training was hampered by injuries and ultimately cut short by a lateral foot sprain suffered on the second day of veteran minicamp. That injury will take around six weeks to heal – coincidentally just in time for the opening of training camp.
Injury concerns aside, Garrett is still the same player who finished his collegiate career averaging 10.3 sacks and 15.7 tackles for loss during his three seasons at Texas A&M. He also finished with 31 career sacks, which is the second most among SEC players during the past 10 years.
It is no surprise, then, why the Browns made him the No. 1 overall selection and still remain excited about the impact he can make on the defensive line. And no one may be more excited that defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, according to clevelandbrowns.com:
"“He’s done a great job and it’s still way early, but you guys are going to see a pretty good football player when he gets the chance to get out there and go. I have a big smile on my face and I will just wait and let him show everybody before I talk about it.”"
It is a bit early to start including Garrett in the talk about the league’s best pass rushers as he hasn’t done anything more than run a few drills in shorts and a helmet.
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But if he becomes the type of player that everyone believes he can be, then his inclusion on any future lists will be a common occurrence.