Myles Garrett Breaks Silence on Jim Schwartz’s Refusal to Adjust vs. Texans

Myles Garrett, Browns

Getty Defensive end Myles Garrett of the Cleveland Browns.

The Houston Texans thoroughly outplayed the Cleveland Browns defense Saturday night, but the coaching disparity was arguably even worse.

Browns defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz was a revelation in Cleveland this season, ushering in an aggressive style of defense that favors man coverage in the backfield. However, that style can be susceptible to splash plays, especially if the Browns’ defensive front isn’t getting home to the QB.

That’s exactly what happened to Cleveland on Saturday, when Texans quarterback CJ Stroud lit up the defense — particularly cornerbacks Martin Emerson Jr. and Greg Newsome II — to the tune of 236 passing yards and 3 TDs in the first half alone.

All-Pro defensive end Myles Garrett — who has a strong case as the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year with 30 QB hits and 14 sacks — explained Schwartz’s philosophy following the game and shed light on why the Browns didn’t make the adjustments necessary to slow down the Texans’ onslaught.

He said from the beginning he’s going to ride with what got us here, and he’s not going to change up. There’s not going to be any magic calls that’s gonna get us out of anything or get us through anything.

I guess [the Texans] were just doing things a little bit different that, you know, kept us off balance. I think just the tempo with which they were doing it — whether it was running the ball a little differently than we had expected, getting the ball out on time or trying to just delay us enough up front to get the ball to their skill players and make plays. And we have to be able to make plays all across the field.

Cleveland’s pass-rushers, led by Garrett, finished the night zero sacks. They finished sixth in the NFL during the regular season, sacking opposing quarterbacks 49 times.

Browns DC Jim Schwartz Out-Schemed by Texans OC Bobby Slowik in Playoff Game

Browns defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz has a new defensive tackle to work with in Chris Williams.

GettyBrowns defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz.

Schwartz will likely be a candidate for at least some of the head coach openings around the league this offseason and already has a history as a head coach in the NFL — five years (2009-13) with the Detroit Lions.

But it was another prospective head-coaching candidate, offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik of the Texans, who schemed circles around Schwartz Saturday night. Josh Norris of The Underdog Football Show posted video to X of a couple of Houston’s plays — the first a first-down pass to wide receiver Nico Collins and the second a touchdown to tight end Dalton Schultz — and outlined how they developed.

“Football is simple. Find you a 6-foot-4, 220-lbs WR who moves like this,” Norris wrote. “Just eating up ground. Nico Collins is awesome. Slowik in his bag with misdirection vs. Cleveland’s aggressive defense.”

“Dalton Schultz TD. Defenses will often face plays like this post-snap that end in a flood concept with [three] levels of routes to the right side,” Norris continued. “But Slowik throws in the corner post to attack that void that 1 & 0 vacate to cover Collins. Easy TD.”

Denzel Ward Calls Out Browns Defense for Failure to Show Up Against Texans

Browns cornerback Denzel Ward is questionable for Saturday's Wild Card matchup against the Houston Texans.

GettyCleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (left) and cornerback Denzel Ward (right) celebrate during an NFL game in 2023.

The touchdown by Schultz that Norris highlighted wasn’t even the most impressive of the night.

The Browns also surrendered a one-play, 76-yard TD to tight end Brevin Jordan immediately after taking a 14-10 lead. The play came with 12 minutes remaining in the second quarter and gave the Texans an edge they would not surrender.

Later in the second quarter, Stroud just missed another TD to a wide receiver running free several steps behind the Browns secondary. Pro Bowl cornerback Denzel Ward spoke about the defense’s failures following the loss Saturday.

“One of the biggest games,” Ward said, per Camryn Justice of WEWS Cleveland. “We needed to show up, and we didn’t.”

Read More