NFL offenses began to find their rhythm in Week 3, but it wasn’t all one-sided. There were some exceptional defensive performances too. From tackle machines to sack masters and shutdown corners, some individuals were truly destructive to the game plans of their opponents.
Who was the defensive player of the week? Here are the candidates, leave your vote below!
DeMarcus Lawrence, DE, Dallas Cowboys
Lawrence is the truth. Through three games he has 6.5 sacks, with three of them coming Monday night against Carson Palmer and the Arizona Cardinals.
Working against right tackle Jared Veldheer, Lawrence was a menace all day. He drew a holding penalty that took a touchdown to Jaron Brown off the board and had good pressure early before starting to get home later on.
He finished the day with three sacks, three tackles for loss, and six QB hits, and but for a few great jukes by Chris Johnson in the backfield it would have been even more. Even had a near-interception as he dived for the ball on a ricochet. It was a day of all-out effort and hard work from Lawrence.
Carl Lawson, DE, Cincinnati Bengals
“Who?” I hear you ask. I don’t blame you for not recognising the name. Before Sunday I wouldn’t have been able to pick him out of a lineup either, but then the fourth-round rookie out of Auburn lined up against Green Bay’s back up left tackle Kyle Murphy and started making Aaron Rodgers’ day a nightmare.
Lawson picked up 2.5 sacks and three QB hits, had another sack taken off the board for a penalty and was constantly forcing Rodgers to move. On one play Lawson made Murphy lose complete sight of him and the tackle did a pirouette to try and find the edge rusher again.
As Rodgers and the Packers mounted their furious comeback in the second half, the man consistently throwing them back and keeping them at bay was Lawson and his never-ending pressure.
Whether or not Lawson can bring the heat when going against a better tackle remains to be seen, but on Sunday he was as deadly as anyone on the defensive side of the ball.
Jalen Ramsey, CB, Jacksonville Jaguars
The entire Jaguars defense was on fire against the Ravens in London, and this spot could easily have gone to Ramsey’s running mate AJ Bouye who had a great interception of his own, but Ramsey has been lights out throughout this season.
On Sunday Ramsey was a blanket on any receiver that came to his side of the field. He picked up a pair of tackles and a pass deflection as well as an incredible diving interception.
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