By TOM WITHERS, AP Sports Writer
BEREA, Ohio (AP) — Myles Garrett could miss Cleveland’s trip to London because of a concussion.
The top overall pick in this year’s NFL draft was placed in concussion protocol on Tuesday after arriving at the team’s facility with concussion-like symptoms.
Because of the timing, it’s unlikely the defensive end will play in Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings at Wickenham Stadium.
Garrett is not under any travel restrictions, and it’s possible he’ll fly with the team if he can clear concussion protocol following practice on Thursday.
The injury is another setback for Garrett, who missed Cleveland’s first four games with a sprained right ankle. The 21-year-old has been steadily increasing his playing time, going from 19 plays in his debut to 33 against Houston on Oct. 15 to 57 in Sunday’s loss to Tennessee.
Garrett has been dominant when he’s healthy. He recorded a sack on his first play as a professional and leads the team with four sacks.
He’s given Cleveland’s defense a huge lift and a pass-rushing presence it lacks when he’s not on the field.
“Myles is a great player,” said linebacker Christian Kirskey, who indicated Garrett will be out Sunday. “We all can see that. He’s just coming off the edge, bringing the extra spark to the defense, being that guy that can go out there and make an impact play. That’s definitely something that we’ll miss. He’s just being Myles. We’ve been seeing him since training camp, the type of player he is. So he’s done everything good for us and we just have to have the next man in.”
Garrett’s injury is another major blow to the winless Browns, who lost Pro Bowl tackle Joe Thomas for the remainder of the season with a torn triceps. Thomas had been on the field for more than 10,000 consecutive plays before getting hurt Sunday. He had surgery on Tuesday.
Garrett was also injured during spring practice, suffering a sprained foot. However, he was back in time for training camp and has lived up to expectations that have now been tarnished by medical issues.
“A guy who’s come in here and done everything right since he’s been here,” rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer said. “He has had some bad luck and all I can do is as a teammate and friend is just continue to encourage him and get back out there. Because he knows that when he’s at his best and when he’s 100 percent healthy, he’s one of the better players in this league and he’s only a rookie.”
For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL
(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)