This offseason, the Cleveland Browns devoted a lot of resources to improving their defense. They signed John Johnson III and Troy Hill away from the Rams. They brought Takkarist McKinley over from the Raiders and Malik Jackson from the Eagles. They drafted Greg Newsome II in the first round and Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah in the second.
They also signed Jadeveon Clowney. Clowney’s a really fascinating player. He was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, and while he has never really lived up to his promise as a pure pass rusher, he’s been a very effective edge-setter and complementary pressure guy for several teams. He’s also a bit of a physical marvel, having graded in the 95th percentile among edge rushers in the SPARQ athleticism metric based on his performance at the NFL Draft Combine.
So, he knows a freakishly-athletic player when he sees one. And he sees one in his new teammate, Myles Garrett.
“It’s funny, I haven’t run into many guys like that in the National Football League yet. It took me eight years to get here to find another one like that, on defense, anyways,” Clowney said Wednesday, per the Akron Beacon Journal. “But it’s great. Knowing what type of guy I’m looking at, I know he’s going to ball and do his thing.”
Garrett graded in the 99th percentile at the 2017 combine, so, Clowney is probably correct. There are just not many guys like him. In terms of athleticism, Clowney previously played with one of them in Houston Texans star J.J. Watt. He and Garrett are of course different types of players and Watt made an even greater level of impact than Garrett has so far in his career, but that’s no slight to Garrett, who looks like a perennial Pro Bowler and possible perennial All-Pro after he made the First Team last season.