Carl Lawson spent the majority of last year’s training camp destroying Cedric Ogbuehi and the rest of the Bengals’ offensive tackles.
He then began destroying offensive tackles around the NFL in both the preseason and regular season. During this year’s offseason, the Bengals’ biggest addition (both metaphorically and literally) was left tackle Cordy Glenn from the Bills. He was brought in to be the starting left tackle, and he’ll hopefully make Andy Dalton more comfortable in the pocket.
It appears Glenn may not be able to provide that sense of safety as consistently when Lawson is going up against him though, and the veteran is amazed at how good Lawson is.
“He’s a freak of nature. He’s fast, but then he’s got power, and at the end of the day he’s determined to get a sack every play,” Glenn told Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com. “For most guys in the league to be good you have to have two dominant traits. He’s got three. He’s strong, fast and his motor is, ‘I have to get a sack.’ Great motor.”
Glenn’s praise for Lawson is as high as Lawson’s motor is, and it’s in line with all the excitement surrounding Lawson this offseason.
Of course, Lawson is helping drive this narrative by proclaiming things like, “I can be ridiculously good.”
This isn’t Glenn’s first introduction to Lawson, though. Glenn was active in the Bills game against the Bengals in Week 5 of last season, although he did not start and recorded just four snaps on special teams as a part of the Bills field goal unit. At that point in the season, he obviously wasn’t healthy, as it was his first game being activated after suffering his foot/ankle injury.
Now that he is getting a closer look by going up against him every day in practice, Glenn has a special comparison in regards to one of Lawson’s three dominant traits.
“It’s a motor of a guy like Dwight Freeney,” said Glenn.
It is hard to imagine a more complimenting comparison for Lawson. Both players obviously weren’t as highly touted as they should have been coming out of college, and neither one necessarily tower over other players on the field. However, they both seem to have that drive to get to the quarterback by any means necessary.
Of course, they did it in far different ways. Freeney made the spin move famous with his otherworldly ability to pull it off that few humans in existence could replicate. He was viewed as far more of a fineness pass rusher, while Lawson wins more with power.
Lawson’s ability to rip through an offensive lineman’s arms is just incredible. He has a pretty wide variety of moves, which is highly unusual to see from a young guy. He is as likely to beat an offensive tackle by running by him as bull rushing him into the lap of the quarterback.
Glenn isn’t the first offensive tackle to be bested and impressed by Lawson in some capacity, and he won’t be the last. It is great to see Lawson get this kind of praise so early in his career, and hopefully he is able to build off his 8.5 sacks from his rookie season.
Whether or not his career arc resembles Freeney’s, he could easily end up being the steal of the 2017 draft.