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Thread: With the 116th Pick, the Bengals Select: DE Carl Lawson, Auburn

  1. #61
    I don't see Lawson as a LB either, unless he's rushing from a stand-up position. He actually ran well for the stopwatch but I agree that he's not really a "space" athlete. As an outside rusher he doesn't have someone like Pollack's agility, but I think he's more powerful. So in that sense, given his shorter stature and power, I don't think the James Harrison comp is a bad one. I suggested Dumervil awhile back as a guy he reminds me of... Lawson is a few inches taller.

    If his productivity comes close to that of either Harrison or Dumervil, it's a home run.

  2. #62
    timestamp video, Sports Science did a piece on Lawson. They compare his "ceiling" to Cliff Avril.

    DLineVids @DLineVids

    Carl Lawson (@carllawson55; #WarEagle) was built for sundays! #SacksAndStats
    11:25 PM - 28 Apr 2017

  3. #63
    Quote Originally Posted by alleycat View Post
    Some of these comps are so ridiculous. Speaking of Ridiculous, Wake had a 45.5 inch vert. Lawson was 33.

    Wake had a 7.1 3cone versus 7.46 for Lawson.

    Very different explosion and agility, whcih are the two most important traits on the edge.

    As long as we're discussing flawed player comparisons how about one more?

    Without knowing any of their respective SPARQ numbers I find myself wanting to describe Lawson as a poor mans version of Derek Barnett. To be fair, Barnett has better bend, but both players lack the length the Bengals prefer and both lack the quick twitch skills needed to be a premier NFL pass rusher,. But to their credit both players have enjoyed tremendous college success by relying on sound and varied technique, savvy play, heavy hands, great burst at the snap, and non stop motors. Both play with a wide base and exceptional strength given their smaller than ideal size, and both players bring added value as high character team leaders.

    As for total value, as the draft grew closer I found myself liking the idea of Barnett at #9 less and less with each passing day. Despite being almost the consensus pick in late mock drafts it never made sense to me from a BPA standpoint. And if Ross was a slight reach at #9, as many claim, then what would Barnett have been? Meanwhile Lawson had been on my 2nd round short list for months, although I freely admit I probably couldn't have pulled the trigger on him over other options. But I would have been giddy with the pick at #73, and getting him at 116 makes him my favorite pick, a fairly remarkable thing to say about a player who isn't close to being a sure thing.

  4. #64
    Predicting NFL's 2017 Surprise Impact Rookies

    LB Carl Lawson, Cincinnati Bengals

    8 OF 10

    1. Joe Robbins/Getty Images
      Once upon a time, Carl Lawson was viewed as a potential first-round talent.
      A lengthy injury history and concerns over his ability to be anything more than a pass-rush specialist forced him into the fourth round where the Cincinnati Bengals used the 116th overall pick to select the Auburn product.
      The Bengals showed philosophical flexibility with the selection, because he doesn't fit what the organization prefers in its edge defenders.
      Five of the team's seven defensive ends are 6'4" or taller. The coaching staff loves its long, lanky pass-rushers. Lawson is 6'2" and 261 pounds with 31.5-inch arms.
      Exceptions are often made in extraordinary circumstances, and Lawson is an extraordinary natural edge-rusher. His 45 quarterback hurries in 2016 ranked fifth among draft-eligible pass-rushers, per Pro Football Focus. The Georgia native has a lighting-quick first step with the strength and pad level to turn the edge against most offensive tackles.
      In order to find a role for the talented defender, the team will use him as a hybrid linebacker.
      "Right now he's working half as a linebacker and half as an end in nickel situations," Bengals defensive coordinator Paul Guenther said, per the Dayton Daily News' Jay Morrison. "I've always said the more you can do the better."

      The more Lawson proves he's capable of, the more he can expect to be on the field. As a nickel rusher, he'll rotate with Carlos Dunlap and Michael Johnson, but he'll garner more reps if he becomes comfortable playing strong-side linebacker in 4-3 alignments.

  5. #65
    Why the Slide?: Carl Lawson

    By Charlie Campbell, @draftcampbell

    Three years ago, we started a series of articles on why certain prospects went undrafted. In that series, I reach out to sources with NFL teams to find out why their organizations passed on drafting a given player, and/or, what were the reasons for other teams to pass on that prospect. We got a lot of positive reader feedback about the series, so we decided to expand in the genre to investigate why some prospects slid in the draft. A year later, we started the Why Slide? series, and this year, it is back. Feel free to email me requests for "Why the Slide?" and "Why Undrafted?" at I can't promise to get to all of them, but I will do my best and definitely respond.

    After being a star recruit, there was a lot of hype about Auburn edge rusher Carl Lawson. Lawson's college career was hampered by injuries for a few years before having his best season in 2016. While the redshirt junior racked up only 30 tackles on the season, he recorded nine sacks. Some in the media had projected Lawson as a first-round pick, including ESPN draft expert Todd McShay, who projected Lawson in the first round at the end of the college football season. However in the 2017 NFL Draft, Lawson slipped to the fourth round. knew that slide was coming as team sources were not as high on Lawson as the media mistakenly pumped him up to be. In early January, I wrote a blog that teams were grading Lawson in the mid-rounds after surveying five different teams. Four teams said they had a third/fourth-round grade on Lawson. One said they could see a team taking him a little higher than that, although another playoff general manager said he had a sixth-round grade on Lawson. Each team source independently described Lawson as being a limited player and thought he was a very stiff pass-rusher with serious medical red flags in his draft report. Those factors all combined to Lawson being graded as a mid-rounder.
    Thus, he was selected at an appropriate level according to teams and didn't truly have a fall in the draft.

    The Cincinnati Bengals ended Lawson's fall when they took him in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. That was a pretty good landing spot for Lawson as the Bengals badly need an edge rusher to emerge across from Carlos Dunlap as Michael Johnson is a limited run stuffer. Will Clarke hasn't become an every-down player and is the pass-rusher who replaces Johnson, but Clarke had only four sacks in 2016, so another option was needed. Cincinnati went offense in the first and second round of the 2017 NFL Draft, but the organization did select a defensive end in the third round with Kansas State's Jordan Willis. Even with selecting Willis, Lawson should get the opportunity to compete quickly for significant playing time with Willis and Clarke. Whoever wins the playing time also will benefit from one-on-ones as teams will focus their double teams on Dunlap and/or Geno Atkins. Cincinnati is starting Lawson out as an outside linebacker, but being an edge rusher is his best skill, and that will probably be the role that Lawson gets used at. The Bengals were a nice landing spot for Lawson, and now it is up to him to prove the doubters wrong and carve out a career in the NFL.

  6. #66

    Not sure how to embed, but follow the link, maybe.

  7. #67
    Quote Originally Posted by membengal View Post

    Not sure how to embed, but follow the link, maybe.

    Charles"Chuck"Smith Retweeted Pete Prisco
    NFL Teams are gonna regret not drafting Carl Lawson. #Auburn #Bengals

  8. #68
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    San Antoino, TX
    The thing that scares me is, they won't use him as he should be used. We've drafted these speed guys before and never put them in a position to excel. they need to sometimes in certain situations switch to like a 3-3-5 alignment, then you can have him or someone else on the other side coming off the edge. We had a pretty bad dude as the SLB for a year (Harrison) and they VERY rarely put him in a position where he excels.


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