Giants: ‘Freak of nature’ Dexter Lawrence is having a DPOY-worthy season

New York Giants defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence II (97) before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants nose tackle Dexter Lawrence II has emerged as one of the most dominant forces in the NFL. Standing at an imposing 6’4″ and weighing 342 pounds, Lawrence commands attention on the field. With his remarkable performances, it is undeniable that Lawrence deserves his place in the conversation as one of the best players in the league.

Giants DC Wink Martindale praises Dexter Lawrence: “Freak of nature”

Defensive coordinator Wink Martindale recognizes the uniqueness of Lawrence’s abilities. In a recent press conference, Martindale dubbed Lawrence a “freak of nature,” acknowledging his unrivaled combination of physical attributes and skill.

“The guy really is, he’s unbelievable, a man that big shouldn’t be that athletic. We can all say that when you watch him. He’s playing at a high level, he’s confident in what he can do. … But Dex, he’s a freak. He’s a freak of nature.”

Wink Martindale according to Matt Citak of

Lawrence is a cornerstone piece for Big Blue

Lawrence’s impact on the field goes beyond statistics. It’s his abilities to disrupt opponents’ game plans, collapse the pocket, and create chaos that set him apart from other defensive linemen in the NFL.

Since his selection in the 2019 NFL Draft, Lawrence has emerged as a cornerstone for Big Blue with his exceptional skills as both a run-stuffer and a pass-rusher. His ability to dominate offensive lines has been evident throughout his four-year tenure.

Standing tall at the heart of the defense, Lawrence has consistently made his presence felt. In his breakout 2022 season, he recorded a career-high 68 total tackles, seven tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, 28 quarterback hits, three pass breakups, and two forced fumbles.

This outstanding performance rightfully earned him his first-career Pro Bowl selection and the title of Second-Team All-Pro. These accolades paved the way for a significant four-year, $90 million contract extension, and he’s proving to be worth every penny.

Making a case for Defensive Player of the Year

Lawrence has accumulated 29 tackles (16 solo), three sacks, three tackles for loss, and 14 quarterback hits through eight games, putting him on pace for a historic season. With each game Lawrence plays, he continues to strengthen his case for the coveted Defensive Player of the Year award.

One of the most remarkable aspects of Lawrence’s game is his ability to disrupt opposing offenses and apply pressure to quarterbacks. With an astounding 44 total pressures, he leads all defensive tackles in this category and is the only interior defensive lineman among the league leaders in pressures.

In Week 8 against the New York Jets, Lawrence etched his name in the history books by recording 15 pressures in a single game, becoming the first player since J.J. Watt in 2014 to achieve this feat.

Lawrence’s influence on New York’s defense cannot be overstated. His sheer presence demands double-teams, allowing his teammates to thrive. His impact extends far beyond his individual performance; he elevates the performance of those around him.

While the Giants’ have endured a disastrous season so far, earning them an overall record of 2-6, Lawrence has consistently delivered exceptional displays of skill, leadership, and determination. His unwavering commitment to excellence serves as a beacon of hope for a team in desperate need of stability and success.

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