Lawrence's suspension prior to the 2018-19 playoffs for testing positive for a banned substance (ostarine) earned him plenty of negative press and he was peppered by teams at the combine. Prior to his suspension, scouts mostly marveled at his play as a dominant force for the Tigers since stepping onto the field to earn Freshman All-American honors after registering 79 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks.
The focus of opponents' blocking schemes ever since, Lawrence's production dipped dramatically in 2017 (39-3-2.5) and 2018 (44-7.5-1.5), raising concerns about his consistency. Players this big, powerful and athletic are rare. Lawrence will earn first-round consideration even with his red-flags.
Lawrence is a massive physical specimen with broad shoulders with a thick overall musculature that warrants an "oversized load" banner when he's driving home from the stadium. He's explosive power as a bull rusher, routinely walking the center into the pocket when he's single blocked. Can be almost immovable when he keeps his pads low, including against double-teams.
While Lawrence's power and girth generate most of the attention, he is surprisingly quick off the snap and demonstrated his exceptional athleticism at the Combine, proving rare speed for a man of his size in precisely 5.05 seconds.
Though his suspension is an obvious concern for pro evaluators, it is important to note that Lawrence received public support from his coaches following the news.
For all of Lawrence's power and size, he is a classic run-stuffer in a pass-happy era offering a limited pass rush repertoire. Further, Lawrence was part of a steady rotation at Clemson and may need more careful monitoring of his weight in the NFL if he is expected to play more minutes.
Projection: First Round
--Field Level Media