After dropping quarterback Carson Palmer for 3.0 sacks on Monday night, this Dallas Cowboys pass rusher has won NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors.
The Grateful Dead coined the phrase, “What a long, strange trip it’s been“. The legendary rock band could have been referencing the career of Dallas Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence.
The Cowboys traded up in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft to selected Lawrence out of Boise State. Dallas had just released legendary pass rusher DeMarcus Ware weeks earlier as the aging veteran’s price tag no longer matched his production.
Perhaps unfairly, Lawrence was seen as Ware’s replacement in Dallas. But a foot injury suffered prior to the start of his rookie season stunted the young passer’s growth.
In his second year, the younger DeMarcus would show flashes of becoming more like his predecessor. Lawrence would lead the Cowboys with 8.0 sacks and appeared to be well on his way of becoming the team’s next great War Daddy.
But offseason back surgery and a four game suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy hindered Lawrence in his third season in Dallas. He would gone on to record just 11 total tackles and one sack in nine games in 2016.
Entering the final year of his rookie contract in Dallas this season, Lawrence has emerged as the league’s top pass rusher. Recording an incredible 17 tackles and 6.5 sacks in only three games, the younger DeMarcus is well on his way to his first Pro Bowl season.
You can now throw in the NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors as Lawrence earned the accolade following his three sack performance against the Arizona Cardinals on Monday night.
DeMarcus Lawrence is leading the defensive resurgence in Dallas. And he is likely going to receive a massive pay day at the end of the year if this level of production continues.