Yet again, Myles Garrett was a force and leader for the Browns defense.
And seemingly more than ever, Garrett seemed to shine brightest during the biggest moments in a number of the Browns' wins throughout the 2020 season. When the defense needed a stop or a turnover, Garrett answered the bell over and over.
"(He means) everything," defensive coordinator Joe Woods said in October. "You have one of those flamethrowers out there, that is what allows you to do certain things in coverage. I always try to put Myles in good situations because I feel like if we can get him one-on-one, I feel like he has a chance to win every time."
Garrett won on numerous occasions in 2020, and it was a big reason why the Browns collected their most victories in a generation.
Garrett, who earned unanimous All-Pro honors, posted his best season yet in a Browns uniform, finishing sixth in the league with 12 sacks, despite missing two games, while adding four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. He was the NFL's Defensive Player of the Month for October, earned his second Pro Bowl honor and was also named the Browns 2020 Walter Payton Man of the Year. He's the only Brown with multiple double-digit sack seasons, and he has three (13.5 in 2018, 10 in 2019, 12 in 2020).
Just like the offensive linemen who tried to stop him, Nathan Zegura and Andrew Gribble had their hands full identifying their favorite Garrett play of 2020. Here are their picks.
Gribble: Week 2 vs. Bengals - Strip sack of QB Joe Burrow
The Bengals weren't going away quietly, and they had all of the momentum after a goal-line stand left the Browns empty-handed after a 7-minute drive. Cincinnati took over at its own 2-yard line midway through the third quarter and trailed by eight. Though the Bengals had gotten out of the shadow of their own goal post, they faced a pivotal third-and-9 from the 12. This would be the first of many moments throughout the season in which Garrett completely changed the game. Garrett lined up on the inside and stared down the Bengals' right guard before making his move. Within an instant, he was barrelling toward star rookie Joe Burrow, who had his eyes locked down the field. With one swipe at the ball, Garrett changed everything, as the ball trickled out and fell into the arms of Browns DE Joe Jackson. Cleveland had the ball back right where it'd been stopped on the previous drive — no harm, no foul. The Browns found the end zone two plays later and led comfortably the rest of the game.
Zegura: Week 3 vs. Washington - Strip sack followed by fumble recovery
Garrett had a dominant season in 2020, finishing with 12 sacks en route to becoming the first player in Browns history to record double-digit sacks in three consecutive seasons. On four of his 12 sacks, Garrett got the big prize with a sack-strip-fumble. His four forced fumbles ranked third in the NFL, and early in the season he had the sack-strip-fumble in three consecutive games from Week 2 to Week 4. The one that occurred Week 3 against the Washington Football Team was my favorite of Garrett's sacks because it was the one that saw him complete the trifecta by making the sack, forcing the fumble and recovering it himself. With the Browns up 31-20 with 6:47 to play and the Football Team driving near mid-field, Garrett decided to call "game." Garrett blew past the left tackle, used his trademark bend to get to the quarterback and chopped the ball down and out of the quarterback's hands as he threw him to the ground. The ball bounced right off the turf, and Garrett grabbed it out of the air, saying "Gimme that" to effectively end the game and seal the win for the Browns.