Immediately after the Cleveland Browns selected defensive end Myles Garrett with the first overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Texas A&M product said on stage that he was really looking forward to sacking Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger during his rookie season. As things turned out, Garrett never even got a chance to rush after Roethlisberger during the regular season as an ankle injury forced him to miss the first meeting between the teams in Week 1 and the Steelers quarterback was a healthy scratch against the Browns in the regular season finale.
With his second season in the NFL now on tap, Garrett said reiterated during the summer that he’s looking forward to finally getting an opportunity to get after Roethlisberger when the Browns host the Steelers Sunday in Cleveland.
“[I want to] sack him. I want to win. I want to take him down multiple times. But I also want to have some fun, Garret said during this year’s training camp,” according to Nate Ulrich of the Beacon Journal/Ohio.com.
In case you missed it several weeks ago, the Browns released a parody video of the opening of the television show ‘The Office’ and it featured Garrett playing the role of Dwight Schrute feeding a printed picture of Roethlisberger through an office paper shredder.
“People loved it,” Garrett said of the video spoof, according to Ulrich. “That’s what it was all about. Some people say you’ve got to prove it. Well, that’s what the season’s for. You can’t shy away from the challenge and just a little bit of fun.”
Come to find out, Roethlisberger has indeed seen that spoof video the Browns released several weeks ago.
“Yeah, probably not, he’s just going to keep to putting my picture in the shredder like he did for that little Office spoof they did,” Roethlisberger said Tuesday when told that Garrett probably doesn’t care too much about the most-recent random act of kindness the Steelers quarterback performed recently for a young boy who’s fighting or a rare disease. “Every year he finds a different way to just get me.”
While Roethlisberger was joking a little bit about that, he knows that Garrett isn’t a joke on the football field.
“I know we talk about last year, but that’s just that, it’s last year, and he is an absolute animal, there’s no doubt about it,” Roethlisberger said of Garrett, who registered 7 sacks in the 11 games that he played in during his rookie season.
“[He’s] developing into one of the best pass rushers in the game and he’s a force to be reckoned with and he’s just one of a lot of a players on that defense. I mean, they’ve had a lot of first round picks that are panning out and becoming really good football players. So, I think it starts with him, but they’ve got more than just him. So, this is a really big challenge for us.”
If you watched any of the Browns preseason games this year, you already know that Garrett looks primed to have a monster 2018 season. In short, it will mostly be up to Steelers tackles Alejandro Villanueva and Marcus Gilbert to make sure that Garrett doesn’t shred Roethlisberger for real Sunday in Cleveland.