CLEVELAND — Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett, who tested positive for and was sidelined with COVID-19 last month, said on Friday that he’s still feeling some effects of COVID-19 and urged everyone, including young people, to take the virus seriously.
Garrett said despite being able to participate in practices and games again, he’s still doing breathing treatments and conditioning on his own.
“I am not sure how long it is going to take me to feel completely 100 with my wind. Physically strength-wise, I feel normal,” Garrett said. “It is just about trying not to gas out too early and trying to pace myself, knowing that it can jump on me really quickly.”
On Nov. 18, Garrett stayed home from practice after feeling ill. He said at that point, he just had some coughing and sneezing, congestion, and he couldn’t clear his throat.
The Browns placed Garrett on the reserve/COVID-19 list two days later after receiving a positive test result from a player. Shortly after his return, Garrett described his experience with the virus.
“It was not the greatest time. I was not one of those asymptomatic cases, even though leading up to it I thought I would be. My parents had it, it kicked their butt. I had it, it kicked my butt. Now, I am back.”
On Friday, the Browns star pass rusher said he’s feeling better each day but wants people to understand the seriousness of the virus and not downplay it.
“I just think people are so caught up in conspiracies and trying to downplay it that they do not actually see that it can be serious in different ways. Talk about how there are not many cases of people dying from it, but that is not all it is about.
“There are cases of people having mental illnesses just as an effect of COVID, heart problems, lung issues and being hospitalized for days and weeks on end. There are so many things that come with being diagnosed with COVID or testing positive for COVID. You have to take it seriously. This is something that is going to stay with you for a while – you do not know how long – but you just have to take care of yourself and do what you have to do to stay healthy,” Garrett said.
Garrett said that while he feels much better, he's still taking it as seriously as possible so he can get back to 100%.
“Whether it is affecting your head, your heart or your lungs, do what you can to bounce back. I am trying to take it as seriously as possible so I can be back correct for us this game, end of the season and hopefully, in the playoffs,” Garret said.
While many young people don’t have the same severe presenting symptoms as older individuals who contract COVID-19 may have, Garrett hopes they’ll still take it seriously and take proactive measures to prevent themselves from getting and spreading the virus.
“I do not think anybody should think they are bulletproof or just because you are asymptomatic that it will not have any effect on you down the line. This is something new that nobody has ever seen before. You just have to try to stay away from it if you can,” Garrett said. “If you do have it, stay away from others, make sure you try to go to the doctor and do what you can to keep this from hospitalizing you or causing further issues for yourself or your family.”