Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson
After a big purge in the offense this offseason and making some solid signings with defensive players like Craig Robertson, and Nick Fairley, I believe the saints might not realize you need some form of a defense to win games. What's the best way to make an elite defense? PASS RUSH. Look at the top defensive teams from last year; we have Seattle, Carolina, and Denver. All of them get after the passer.
Yes they do have Cameron Jordan, but the man needs help. This Defense last year gave up the most PPG, and the 2nd most yards per game. That is horrible. Granted they did have some injuries in the DB's. And if they were not getting some of those guys back I would have went Eli Apple here.
Realistically, with this pick any defensive player would have been ok. I don't believe in drafting an OG in the first round. Also their WR need is in depth as they have Brandon Cooks who is a very good receiver.
So, why Shaq Lawson?
First off here is some tape:
No, he is not your prototypical DE in size but man does he disrupt the QB. Often using he smaller size to his advantage with leverage. He has a nasty spin move, and when he can't get the sack, forces bad throws. To me he is #2 DE in this draft. I think as a team facing the Saints to have to game plan for both those DE's would be a nightmare. Lawson also is a very good run stopper, contains edge and does not miss the tackle.
The one thing I really dislike about Lawson is, he gets off the ball late. It seems coachable as he is not lacking in burst at all, just anticipation. I have heard many of pro's say this too. There are several plays on his tape where the rest of the DL is moving and he has yet to start. To me this is a bitter sweet. Yes he is slow off the ball, but he still is productive. Imagine he is coached up and is getting off the ball fast? I would not want to see that in the NFC.
Here is his spider graph:
As you can see he has extreme athletic ability, but not size. It definitely helps to have a great pass rusher on the other side as he should get a lot of single blockers.
Finally, many believe Ronnie Stanley is the best OT in this draft, definitely top 2. Go watch the game of Clemson vs Norte Dame. Lawson gets the better of Stanley often. He clearly is a top talent at his position. He is a perfect fit for a team that could use all the help it can get on defense.
2016 BGN Mock Draft Order
1) Titans (ablesser88) - Laremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss - [Explanation]
2) Browns ( Genius) - Carson Wentz, QB, North Dakota State - [Explanation]
3) Chargers (StoneColeKiller58) - Jared Goff, QB, Cal - [Explanation]
4) Cowboys (kamjam) - Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State - [Explanation]
5) Jaguars (drc242) - Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State - [Explanation]
6) Ravens (rohan915) - DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon - [Explanation]
7) 49ers (LAOJoe) - Myles Jack, LB, UCLA - [Explanation]
8) Eagles (slickpablovick) - Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame - [Explanation]
9) Buccaneers (OneBucFan47) - Noah Spence, DE, Eastern Kentucky - [Explanation]
10) Giants (Paulie97) - Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida - [Explanation]
11) Bears (Kiko's Delivery Service) - Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State - [Explanation]
12) Saints (kylebruneault) - Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson - [Explanation]
13) Dolphins (wildcatlh) -
14) Raiders (Luxury_Used_Vehicles_By_Braman) -
15) Rams (NowWhat?) -
16) Lions (bri g) -
17) Falcons (thealien2696) -
18) Colts (ei78) -
19) Bills (naderg43) -
20) Jets (Quacking_Eagle) -
21) Washington (TheCoxishere) -
22) Texans (jeppsforst) -
23) Vikings (WScott151) -
24) Bengals (burkhart_b) -
25) Steelers (theaction) -
26) Seahawks (tfrank9811) -
27) Packers (3Trace) -
28) Chiefs (jawmo) -
N/A) Patriots - Cheaters
29) Cardinals (big DUB) -
30) Panthers (zatch2k) -
31) Broncos (JALupowitz) -