Myles Garrett: Browns 'Absolutely' Best AFC North Team After Odell Beckham Trade

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 13, 2019

New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham gestures prior to an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, Sunday, Dec. 2, 2018, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
Seth Wenig/Associated Press

The Cleveland Browns are the team to beat in the AFC North after trading for wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

At least in the eyes of defensive end Myles Garrett.

Garrett said that is "absolutely" the case after Cleveland traded for the three-time Pro Bowler, per Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. Adam Schefter of ESPN reported the Browns sent the New York Giants a first- and third-round pick in this year's draft and safety Jabrill Peppers in the trade.

Jurassic Myles🦖 @MylesLGarrett


Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Browns 2019 depth chart is wild QB Baker Mayfield RB Nick Chubb WR Odell Beckham Jr WR Jarvis Landry WR Antonio Callaway TE David Njoku https://t.co/tkQjdwUb3E

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport


Cleveland was already trending in the right direction before trading for one of the best receivers in the entire league. It finished 7-8-1 during the 2018 campaign after winning one combined game the previous two years and has a potential franchise quarterback in Baker Mayfield leading the way into the future.

Garrett is also a major reason for the turnaround seeing how the 2017 No. 1 overall pick tallied 13.5 sacks and three forced fumbles as a pass-rushing force in 2018.

Still, the addition of Beckham gives the entire team a new look and will create openings for the rest of the skill players in the offense. Jarvis Landry will likely face single coverage every time he lines up for a pass, and Nick Chubb will have plenty of running room with opposing defenses unable to commit additional defenders to the box.

Beckham finished with 77 catches for 1,052 yards and six touchdowns in 12 games last season, surpassing 1,000 yards for the fourth time in five years.

As for the rest of the AFC North, the Pittsburgh Steelers lost Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown, the Cincinnati Bengals haven't made any division-shifting additions after missing the playoffs three years in a row, and the Baltimore Ravens lost a number of players from a defense that led the league in yards allowed last year, including Za'Darius Smith and C.J. Mosley.

Garrett may have a point.