BEREA, Ohio -- The Cleveland Browns took every precaution to make sure rookie defensive lineman Myles Garrett, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, would be ready for training camp after he went down with an injury during mandatory minicamp.
And the plan worked well because as the Browns get training camp underway today at the team’s Berea headquarters, their top selection in 2017 is clear to participate.
“Myles is ready to go,” Browns coach Hue Jackson said at Wednesday’s introductory press conference.
That news was music to the ears of Garrett’s teammates, who believe he can be an impactful player right away on a defense that allowed over 6,000 yards of total offense on the way to a 1-15 record in the 2016 season.
In 34 games over his three years at Texas A&M, Garrett registered 141 total tackles, including 81 solo stops and 60 assists, with 31.0 quarterback sacks, seven forced fumbles, one recovery, five passes defended and one interception.
After having 11 and 11.5 sacks in each of his first two years at Texas A&M, Garrett registered 8.5 sacks during the 2016 season despite playing much of the year with a high ankle sprain.
In a career-low 10 games because of the lower-body injury, Garrett saw significant dips in productivity as it relates to tackles (33), solo stops (18) and assists (15), as well as forced fumbles (two) from the previous season, but still registered 15 tackles for lost yardage.
At the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine, the 6-foot-5, 261-pound Garrett shined in all of the drills, both on and off the field.
Among all defensive line prospects, Garrett placed sixth in the 40-yard dash (4.64 seconds), second in the bench press (33 repetitions), first in the vertical jump (41.0 inches) and third in the broad jump (128.0 inches).
“I actually watch Myles a lot just to see what he’s got. He didn’t practice too much in OTAs, but the way that he can move, the way that he can bend, how big and strong he is, I can tell that that’s something I haven’t seen too much of, and I think that he can be a really, really good force on the team, so I’m just super excited for him,” veteran defensive back Joe Haden said.
“I just hope our team is able to go into this season healthy and ready to go because I know we have a lot of players that are just ready to get after it and ready to change what happened last year. Me, for one, so just hungry to get back out there and start playing.”
Although Garrett is okay to start training camp, the Browns will keep a close eye on him throughout practice to make sure he is healthy throughout the three-plus weeks of preseason work.
“We will definitely monitor him,” Jackson said. “I think he is totally healthy. Maybe has not done all the conditioning that you would like to see right before training camp, but I think he is up to speed and ready to go. He is looking forward to it.”