Myles Garrett is a problem.
The 6-foot-4, 272-pound defensive end has been wreaking havoc on opposing offenses in 2018 with his terrifying blend of speed and power. His 12.5 sacks through 14 games are tied for fourth-most in the NFL, while his 26 QB hits tie him for fifth-most.
Garrett's brute strength and explosive first step are outrageous, but NFL offensive tackles are good enough to largely neutralize those abilities if a player is one-dimensional. It's Garrett's surprising ability to "bend" that ties everything together and makes him a true terror. "Bend," when used to refer to a pass rusher, refers to the ability of a player to get underneath and around a blocker while simultaneously curving toward the quarterback's "spot."
The QB's spot is where he intends to survey the field from after he takes his drop. If you can get to said spot quickly, that's guaranteed pressure on the quarterback. Von Miller has the most impressive bend in the NFL, but Garrett isn't far behind. Check this clip out:
Big time momentum changing play from Myles Garrett here on the strip sack. Excellent bend and turn on the speed rush.
*Also, nice rush work from Kirksey and a hell of an athletic grab by Brantley. pic.twitter.com/OtFtlyQ1XP
— Jake Burns (@jake_burns18) January 2, 2018
That's supernatural body control and flexibility for an athlete of Garrett's size.
To work on his bend, Garrett performs the Body Control Tennis Ball Drill. Shown in the video player above (or the link here), the drill requires Garrett to bend down and pick up a tennis ball off the turf while turning the corner toward an imaginary quarterback. The fluidity Garrett displays during the drill is breathtaking."I'm trying to master my athleticism," Garrett told STACK. "I never know how great I can really be if I don't attack every single drill as hard as I can."
If you're a player looking to improve your pass-rushing prowess, you'd be wise to add the Body Control Tennis Ball drill to your repertoire.
Photo Credit: Joe Robbins/Getty Images
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