After enjoying his best season of his career, 10 tackles for loss and four sacks, Rashard Lawrence flirted with declaring for the 2019 NFL Draft before deciding to come back for his senior season. Entering his senior season Lawrence is looking to build off his junior season and elevate his draft stock even further. Here’s a look at Lawrence’s traits and what his NFL Draft outlook could be.
What Lawrence Does Well
Quick off the ball Rashard Lawrence is able to get on top of offensive lineman putting them on their heels and giving him an early advantage at the point of attack. From there Lawrence is strong at the point of attack making it very difficult to move him off his spot. Lawrence is able to use his hands and length well to take on the blocker creating leverage that can help clog up running lanes.
Concerns about Lawrence
While Rashard Lawrence has good burst and is strong at the point of attack, from there is where he can struggle. Lawrence has lateral agility but lacks the hands to help him get off blocks often making him an ineffective pass rusher if he doesn’t win initially and cause him to miss opportunities to make tackles as the running back goes right by in the gap to his side. Lawrence also will struggle mightily against double teams routinely getting pushed yards off his spot and even knocked to the ground.
Rashard Lawrence NFL Outlook
Rashard Lawrence shows some physical traits and potential but he seems a bit miscast as a DE in the Tigers 3-4 defense. Lawrence is adequate being able to take on blockers to help free up runners and provide some pass rush, but he may be better suited to go to an NFL team where he can line up as a 3 technique defensive tackle where he can use his quickness to attack the gap looking to create. Lawrence has potential and it wouldn’t shock me if he ended up working his way into a starting role, but at this point he looks like a rotational player.