Film Room: A war daddy emerges for the Dallas Cowboys

GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 25: Defensive end Demarcus Lawrence
GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 25: Defensive end Demarcus Lawrence /
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GLENDALE, AZ – SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback Carson Palmer
GLENDALE, AZ – SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback Carson Palmer /

In today’s film room, we are going to take a look at Lawrence’s epic performance to show why he’s a complete edge rusher and the true “war-daddy” the Cowboys have needed on defense.

First and foremost, the Cardinals tried everything they could to block Lawrence, but he was just too good in part due to his versatility. He has so many different ways he can beat blockers that it’s hard for teams to get a read on how he likes to rush. Let’s examine all the different ways Lawrence won in Week 3.

Lawrence’s first “sack” of the game was actually negated by a defensive holding call by Sean Lee. However, I wanted to highlight this play because it shows the natural power Lawrence has in his legs. NFL fans get too caught up in defensive ends who can bend around the edge to get sacks, but bullying an offensive tackle back into the quarterback for a sack is worth the same.

Lawrence will never be a speed-rusher, but his power and leg drive is so good that it doesn’t even matter. Look at how he gets up under the tackle and uses his length to get to the quarterback:

After Lawrence was causing the offensive tackles to have fits, the Cardinals tried to motion a tight end to his side to force him to take a wider angle on his rush. The thinking was that if they could get him further away from the middle of the pocket, it would allow quarterback Carson Palmer to step up and avoid the pressure.

However, Lawrence is just too good with his hands to be left alone with a tight end. Here he is beating veteran tight end Jermaine Gresham with ease: