Myles Garrett’s love of dinosaurs is no secret. Like quarterback sacks and poetry, dinosaurs are among his favorite things, and the Texas A&M star defensive end has even given reporters assignments to go study up on his favorite extinct beasts.
It all started with Jurassic Park, Garrett says, Steven Spielberg’s classic 1993 film about the miraculous (and poorly executed) revival of dinosaurs. It was the first movie Garrett can recall watching as a child, and he was hooked.
That fascination naturally included playing with dinosaur toys, and his childhood favorite was the Tyrannosaurus rex. But as he got older and learned more about it, the T-Rex wasn’t all that he had originally thought. Among the T-Rex’s “overrated” elements, Garrett says, were its “baby arms,” and that it was often more of a scavenger than a hunter. So it got bumped by the Spinosaurus on Garrett’s dino rankings.
“Some studies are saying they actually hunted in packs,” Garrett says of the T-Rex. “I don’t think that would be the same with Spinosaurus, which would go solo, eat fish or crocodiles or whatever it could get its hands on. And it didn’t have baby arms.”
We wanted to dig a little deeper into Garrett’s dinosaur love. He obliged in an interview with his top five, including how he hopes to model his game after one dinosaur in particular.
1. Spinosaurus: National Geographic calls this “the biggest and the baddest among meat-eating dinosaurs.” Garrett quickly named it his favorite.
Garrett’s take: “[It’s] unknown, sort of. Has a big sail. It’s the largest quadruped. It’s fast. It’s kind of adaptable, it could go on water and land.”
2. Deinonychus: Encyclopedia Britannica calls this beast “a fast, agile predator whose large brain enabled it to perform relatively complex movements during the chase and kill.”
Garrett’s take: “It’s what Jurassic Park raptors were based off of. Intelligence, quickness.”
3. Triceratops: The three-horned trike was elephant-sized and an herbivore, according to Live Science. It fended off its nemesis — the T-Rex — with those killer horns, which helped it to earn a spot on Garrett’s list.
Garrett’s take, short and sweet: “Great defense.”
4. Dilophosaurus: In the original Jurassic Park movie, it’s the festive little lizard thing that spits the sludge of death all over Wayne “Newman” Knight. (Garrett clarifies that they didn’t really do that in real life.)
Garrett’s take: “It had frills that came out the side of his neck, the side of his head, and it was colorful. From Jurassic Park, the book, it had a weird call. It made a sound like an owl.”
5. Velociraptor: These are “the bite-sized” versions of Deinonychus, Garrett says. They were portrayed as highly intelligent, even communicative, in all four Jurassic movies.
Garrett’s take: “That’s how I want my game to be: precise moves. In any moment, you can get the blow that will take you out of the game.”