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“IF YOU CAN BELIEVE IT, THE MIND CAN ACHIEVE IT.”

-RONNIE LOTT

Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett leads by example

myles_garrett1webJunior defensive end Myles Garrett already had played more during four quarters against Tennessee than Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin had anticipated. Then Garrett, hampered by an injured leg, hobbled over to Sumlin on the sidelines before the start of overtime.
“He said, ‘No, I’m playing,’ ” Sumlin recalled Tuesday. “He played both overtimes. It was important for him to win that game with his teammates.”

The No. 6 Aggies, who prevailed 45-38 in double overtime against the Volunteers on Oct. 8 at Kyle Field, were off last Saturday in preparation for their trip to Tuscaloosa, Ala., to play top-ranked Alabama on Saturday.

“As great a talent as he is, and with everything he has at stake professionally down the road, it shows what kind of teammate he is, and where this team is right now, with the guys who are high-profile players doing everything possible to win games and be great teammates,” Sumlin said of Garrett, who is projected by some to be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

Garrett said A&M’s open date helped him get well. He suffered the leg injury in the Aggies’ 45-24 victory over Arkansas on Sept. 24 but insisted on returning in that game.

He then sat out A&M’s 24-13 victory at South Carolina before returning in what was supposed to be a limited role against then-No. 9 Tennessee. So what about Saturday’s marquee matchup between the Aggies (6-0, 4-0 Southeastern Conference) and the Crimson Tide (7-0, 4-0)?

“I can play on first, second, third and fourth downs,” Garrett said, smiling.

Garrett teams up with senior Daeshon Hall to form what widely is considered to be the top defensive-end tandem in the nation. The duo has combined for 71/2 sacks, 16 quarterback hurries and 15 tackles for loss in six games.

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