Myles Garrett led Za'Darius Smith to pick Browns over two other teams

Minnesota Vikings v Green Bay Packers
Minnesota Vikings v Green Bay Packers / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

Oftentimes, when a veteran is traded in the NFL, they're included in the decision. That was the case for Deshaun Watson, who picked the Cleveland Browns over several suitors ahead of the 2022 season. It was also the case for Za'Darius Smith, who had his choice of three teams.

According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, Smith, who is an eight-year vet, was said to have decided on the Browns since it meant he could play opposite Myles Garrett.

It makes sense that Smith would want to work with Garrett, who is one of the best pass rushers in the NFL. However, Smith himself has been among the best in the game over the past four seasons.

Jake Trotter pointed this out when he tweeted that only five players have put up at least 10 sacks in three of the past four seasons. Smith is one of those players, as is Garrett.

Smith might have even made it four seasons in a row, had it not been for a back injury in 2021. That injury forced him to miss all but one game for the Green Bay Packers, which was furstrating for him given the fact that he had blossomed into a superstar following his exit from Baltimore.

During those first two seasons with the Packers, he had 13.5 sacks followed by 12.5 He then joined Minnesota in 2022 and had 44 tackles and 10 sacks while playing in 16 games – which put to rest concerns about the back issue that forced him out in 2021.

Smith also returned to the Pro Bowl last year, making it for the third time in his career.

With him and Garrett working together, opposing teams will be asked to pick their poison. Focusing too much on one Pro Bowl pass rusher could very well lead to another putting up a dominant performance.

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In Cleveland, he's not only going to join Garrett but will also have a familiar face in Dalvin Tomlinson, who was also with Minnesota in 2022 but signed with the Browns this offseason.