Milwaukee native Chris Garrett is drafted by the LA Rams
MILWAUKEE (CBS58) - In the 2021 NFL Draft, only 259 players get to hear their names called.
“It still doesn’t feel real I’m gonna be honest with you,” said Chris Garrett.
As the NFL draft neared its end, Milwaukee native Chris Garrett wasn’t sure he would be one of those picks, but then he got the call.
“I was expecting them to be checking in on me like ‘hey if you go undrafted’ or something like that and then he’s like 'we’re gonna pick you'. I was – ‘you’re going to pick me!’,” said Garrett.
Garrett became the second player ever drafted from Division II’s Concordia University St. Paul when the Los Angeles Rams selected him with the 252nd overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Garrett saw his name on the screen during the draft and the celebration was on. He spent the night with his family including his wife, Mikayla and his three-week-old son, Taysom Leon, and of course the woman who raised him, his grandmother Ambretta.
“That’s what really was emotional. [Be]cause me knowing how much she’s done to help me get to that point – this point. And we had a couple tears,” said Garrett.
The Wisconsin Lutheran graduate put together an All-American career playing as a defensive lineman for the Golden Bears. He was the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Defensive Player of the Year in 2019. He set the DII career record for forced fumbles with 15 and a school record in sacks with 36.5 in just 28 games. It’s fitting that Garrett is going to a Rams team that led the NFL in total defense last year. At 6-3, roughly 240 pounds, he expects to move to outside linebacker in the NFL.
“I think they’re a great fit for me honestly. Looking at how their outside linebackers play I think I’m gonna bring exactly what they see in me. Just that speed off the edge. That relentless mentality I have,” said Garrett. “Just who I am as a person to not stand back and be a follower but to lead. That doesn’t necessarily mean to be a vocal leader, but to lead by example and honestly just working my butt off and doing what it takes to win.”
Concordia St. Paul did not have season in 2020 because of COVID-19 concerns. Garrett spent his time preparing for the NFL Draft working out at Nxt Level Sports Performance in Waukesha. He played in the Hula Bowl, but otherwise he has not seen any time on the football field in a game since 2019. Camp can’t come soon enough.
“I haven’t been on a team in a while and I miss it. I miss that feeling of all being together and unified towards one goal. I can’t wait to get to it,” said Garrett.
The Rams begin rookie minicamp on May 14th.