August 25, 2014

No. 4: Lawson





Carl Lawson
6-foot-2, 261 pounds, Sophomore

BUNKER rank BM rank AD rank JGT rank
9 3 2 4

This is a tough one to write.

Carl Lawson, when healthy, is a potentially dominating defensive end. He wasn't consistently dominant last season, sure, but power and experience were the only mitigating factors. He added strength during the Tigers' winter workouts and was exhibiting remarkable progress in terms of technical ability during the first three weeks of spring ball.

Things ended abruptly just before A-Day when Lawson suffered an injury to his left knee. After a period of deliberation regarding how best to treat the injury, doctors decided that a ligament repair was the best course of action.

One problem: That surgery requires at least six months to heal. Surgery was performed during the first week of May, meaning Lawson likely won't be ready to play until November. Everyone associated with the program has been impressed with Lawson's dogged approach toward recovery. He's expected to match or exceed the most optimistic return date, which could see Lawson become availanle for varsity action in October.

Still, that's a pipe dream at the moment. Making progress in rehabilitation is different than thriving without discomfort on the field, so Lawson remains a long way from being ready to suit up on Saturdays.

Will he be willing to burn a season of eligibilty for a maximum of six regular-season games?
NOTE: The Top 40 rankings were from surveys taken early in summer, when the extent of Lawson's injury was unclear.

- Jay G. Tate

MORE: The Top 40 Hub | Auburn Roster | Full 2013 Stats

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