Myles Garrett vows to play 'same way,' slow Lamar

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  • By Grant Gordon
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Offensive tackles have struggled mightily in their attempts to slow Myles Garrett's rush thus far.

Penalties haven't slowed the Browns' terror on the edge all that much, either.

And, going forward, Garrett's not going to let anything slow his dominant play.

"I'm still going to play football the same way," Garrett said via the Browns' website's Nick Shook. "I don't feel like I did anything wrong. I don't feel like I intentionally landed on the guy or hit him late. The only thing I did wrong in [in Week 2 against the Jets] was jumping offsides twice."

Second only to Tampa Bay's sudden sack sensation Shaquil Barrett (8.0) sacks, Garrett's six sacks lead the AFC and are second in the NFL. As aforementioned, he's also racked up a lofty laundry bill.

Garrett's been flagged a half-dozen times thus far -- matching his sack total. With one penalty declined, he's been penalized five times (tied for second in the league) for 50 yards (also second) with two roughing-the-passer calls and an unnecessary roughness admonishing.

Yellow has very much dimmed the Browns' prospects thus far as their 35 penalties are tied with the Falcons for the most in the NFL, with the 327 penalty yards accrued tops in the NFL, as well.

While Garrett contends that he won't let penalties slow his play down, the reality is he'll likely have to speed it up this Sunday. Garrett and the rest of the Cleveland defensive contingent are tasked with putting the clamps on Lamar Jackson, arguably the most fleet-footed quarterback currently under center in the NFL.

Admittedly, Garrett knows he needs to hit Jackson in the right spot -- that being one in which he's not getting left lunging after a juke or left with a penalty.

"You are trying to go toward his midsection," Garrett said. "You are not trying to hit up high. You have to stop those legs. Those are what are getting everybody to miss. It is not like he is wiggling. Those cuts are very sharp and precise. He is not really chopping or doing anything like that, but if you are able to keep him from doing that one cut, make sure you are funneling him back to your defenders, you can keep him from tearing you up."

Sitting at 1-2, the Browns have underwhelmed in many ways, but Garrett certainly has not. As a franchise renaissance had been hoped for and prognosticated by many -- and obviously still could come to fruition with 13 games to play -- Garrett has been phenomenal to a historic extent. His six sacks are the most for a Browns player over the first three weeks of the season since sacks became an official statistic in 1982.

And for all the hyperbole and hubbub regarding the Browns' early travails, Sunday will see them playing for a share of first place in the AFC North with the Ravens (2-1). When Monday comes, if Cleveland is atop its division, Garrett will likely have played a large role and that means stifling Jackson.

"(Jackson's mobility) is not a surprise, but it still catches people off guard because of how slick he is from getting away from potential tacklers," Garrett said. "He sees them coming, and he will do a back juke or hit a move to the side, and then all of the sudden, they are on the ground thinking they already had him. He is as elusive as they come, but you just have to make sure you have population to the ball and see what you hit."

Garrett's been hitting plenty -- he's tallied 12 tackles, five for a loss, notched eight quarterback hits, one forced fumble and has a sack in every game this season (four straight dating back to last season). And that's reason enough as to why he's not about to let anything change the way he's playing the game.

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