The Cleveland Browns got their first look at #1 overall pick Myles Garrett on Sunday against the New York Jets. Garrett showed up and balled out, recording his first two NFL sacks. Browns fans everywhere could finally let out a sigh or relief as Garrett (who was forced to sit out the teams first four games due to an ankle sprain suffered in practice before their Week 1 game against Pittsburgh) was finally given the green light to suit up and play against the Jets.
After being drafted by Cleveland, Garrett made it known in an interview that he hoped that his first NFL sack would come in the opening week of the season against Pittsburgh’s veteran signal caller Ben Roethlisberger. I won’t assume that he’s glad his first NFL sack came not against Roethlisberger, but instead against NFL journeymen Josh McCown of the Jets. I will assume though that, while who he sacked wasn’t ideal for his high standards, he is just glad to have a sack. The Browns defensive front seven definitely left a lot to be desired through their first four weeks of the season, compiling a mere nine sacks. Garrett worked his tail off and finally found the field in Week 5 and didn’t disappoint as he gained two sacks on his own.
Great game, kid
It was interesting to see how Myles Garrett was implemented into the Browns defensive scheme and how his teammates reacted to him being out there. Despite the Browns losing to the Jets 17-14, the defensive front looked different than it has in previous weeks. The addition of Garrett really rejuvenated the front seven. Garrett made his presence known early and often, getting to McCown and sacking him on his first career play. Garrett eventually forced the Jets to double team him on quite a few plays over the course of the game. His first step after the snap looked lethal as both of his sacked showed. It almost seemed like he was in the backfield before McCown even received the snap.
Myles Garrett showed diversity by consistently holding his own against the Jets run attack. Most pass rushers focus solely on rushing the passer. But Garrett proved capable of keeping holes from opening. Garrett was a gigantic help to the Browns run defense as they allowed only 37 yards on 15 carries. His presence on the field seemed to help that entire defensive line throughout the game. If Garrett can continue to provide that advantage of high energy and adapt to become a leader on that defense. That could eventually leak into their defensive backfield and that whole defense could take a step towards being a cohesive unit.
On the rise
The Browns continue to stay close in most games and the addition of Myles Garrett to this defense may get them closer to that allusive first win of 2017. They face a formidable opponent in Week 6 in the Houston Texans. The Texans have no JJ Watt and no Whitney Mercilus, so if the Browns offense can stay on the field and the defense can cool down the red hot rookie QB Deshaun Watson long enough to keep the offense in striking distance. It may not be so crazy to think the Browns could get win number one on Sunday. Or maybe they find a way to lose another game. Regardless of the outcome of Week 6 the Browns rookies continue to shine, and now with Myles Garrett on the field giving opposing quarterbacks nightmares, everything besides their win total is trending up in Cleveland.
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