Browns Star Myles Garrett Sends Strong Message After Being Ruled Out

Getty Myles Garrett, Baker Mayfield and Larry Ogunjobi of the Cleveland Browns.

The Cleveland Browns will be missing Defensive Player of the Year candidate Myles Garrett against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday after the star pass-rusher tested positive for COVID-19.

Garrett had missed practice this week with an illness, but it was not until Friday that he returned a positive test. Garrett took to Instagram to issue a message to his team and Browns fans.

“Not the news you want to hear but can’t thank y’all enough for the love,” he wrote. “This continues to affect us all in so many ways, but we’ll get through it together. Be back soon, Dawg Pound.”

The Browns have dealt with a flurry of COVID-19 problems this week, with right tackle Jack Conklin and kicker Cody Parkey also having to miss time after being close contacts of someone who tested positive.

While Conklin and Parkey are hopeful to be back on Sunday, Garrett could also miss next week’s matchup against the Jaguars. According to NFL rules, a player who tests positive for COVID-19 can’t return to the team until at least 10 days after the start of symptoms, plus at least 24 hours after symptoms have passed.

Browns Looking to Fill Massive Void on Defensive Line

Fantasy Football Defense Rankings Week 6

GettyMyles Garrett of the Cleveland Browns pumps up the crowd in the fourth quarter against the Indianapolis Colts.

The Browns will now use a combination of Adrian Clayborn and Porter Gustin to fill the void, and defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson also has the ability to play the outside techniques if needed.

“We’re going to work through it,” Stefanski said. “It’s 2020. Expect the unexpected. Whoever is available to us, I promise you, they’ll be ready to roll on Sunday, and the guys know that.

“Whenever you’re without a player of Myles’ caliber, it’s our job as coaches to make sure we’re putting guys in position to succeed,” Stefanski added. “I think we have a defensive line that plays really well together.”

Kevin Stefanski: "Whoever is available to us, I promise they'll be ready to roll on Sunday."Kevin Stefanski addressed the media via Zoom on November 20, 2020. Kevin discussed the impact of losing Myles Garrett this week, his plan for a DE rotation, and how versatility has helped the team overcome obstacles this season. #BrownsMedia #PressConference2020-11-20T20:10:16Z

Garrett’s game-changing production will be missed. He leads the NFL with 9.5 sacks and is tied for the lead with four forced fumbles. Browns defensive line coach Chris Kiffin has faith in his guys to come through and fill the void.

“They’ve been playing all year long,” Kiffin said. “All it means is that there’s more reps. It’s hard to manage those guys’ reps at times. I’m kind of excited to see these guys do that in their spots and their roles against a quarterback that has been known to hold onto the ball and give us opportunities.”

Mack Wilson, Wyatt Teller Questionable for Sunday

Beyond COVID-19 news, the Browns also have injuries to worry about to linebacker Mack Wilson and guard Wyatt Teller. Wilson is dealing with a hip issue, while Teller is still nursing a calf strain.

Teller returned to the lineup last week, giving the Browns a boost on the offensive line after three games on the sideline.

“I think he is sore,” Stefanski said. “He practiced so we will see as the next couple of days go. I am hopeful for a Wyatt, but he is definitely sore.”

Wilson suffered a scary knee injury in camp that was feared to be season-ending. However, Wilson returned in Week 3 to help bolster the linebacker corps. Wilson has 19 tackles this season.

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