Dreaming big: Former Silver Bluff star Lawrence turned goals into reality
As everyone in the current social media climate knows, not all tweets age well.
It’s only a matter of time before a misguided message consisting of up to 280 characters comes back to haunt you.
But for Dallas Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, the promise he tweeted out on Feb. 1, 2017, just four days before the Super Bowl 51, turned out to be spot on.
It’s aged really well so far.
Coming off of his second back surgery in as many offseasons, Lawrence tweeted, “Cowboys fans I promise you I’m coming back bigger badder and better than ever. Surgery went great! #thereisnooffseason”
The former Silver Bluff High School star did just that, making 58 total tackles and 14.5 sacks – second most in the league – in 2017. His 52 quarterback pressures were the most by a Cowboy since Charles Haley. This season he’s been dominant as well. Lawrence already has 58 total tackles, 8.5 sacks and an interception through 14 games.
“To be honest, I feel like you have to dream at first and then speak it into existence,” Lawrence said. “That’s all I was trying to do is, you know, speak my life into existence. It was the focus and intensity throughout that offseason that made me bigger, better and stronger.”
Heading into this season Lawrence had two main points of focus. He wanted to sharpen his intensity coming off the ball as a personal goal. He also wanted to build a bond with the defensive unit, not only helping make himself a better player, but doing the necessary things to help make the players around him better as well.
“I feel like it’s going well, but in order to take this defense to where we want to be we need to cause more turnovers and hit harder,” Lawrence said before taking a brief pause to put emphasis on the second part. “We need to hit harder.”
Lawrence’s efforts have resulted in him picking up his second consecutive Pro Bowl selection, something he said is an honor shared by his Cowboys defensive teammates. Lawrence is a part of a core group of defensive players which includes Taco Charlton, Tyrone Crowder, Jaylon Smith and Antwaun Woods. The players have become known as the “Hot Boyz” – inspired partly by the former New Orleans rap group led by Lil Wayne and Juvenile.
“We ain’t out there with the music videos or the tours and all that, but we’re Hot Boyz by our play,” Lawrence explained.
Although Lawrence’s stardom has risen in recent years, he’s reluctant to embrace the fame aspect of being considered one of the best defensive players in the NFL. Lawrence, who grew up in New Ellenton, said he likes to keep that small town vibe for the most part.
“I come home and everyone treats me the same, and that’s what I love. I want that same energy and same love that they gave before,” Lawrence said. “They show mad love and watch the games and stuff. As long as they treat me the same, I’ll treat them the same. I’m not a star.”
Lawrence hasn’t even taken the time to get caught up in any of the accolades yet. If you ask him for his favorite moment or honor, he doesn’t have one. He was pleased with his selection to another Pro Bowl on Wednesday, but that’s not his main goal.
He took to Twitter to let the fans know.
“WAY bigger plans in mind. But thankful to the best fans in football & my fellow @NFL brothers for the voting me into my 2nd Pro Bowl. PS. Shout out to our D-unit & my Hot Boyz! This is all of our honor.,” Lawrence tweeted.
If his motto of speaking things into existence holds true those bigger plans will have him playing in Atlanta in early February.
“I’ve got big dreams and big hopes that we can make the Super Bowl and that will be my moment, to play on that big stage,” Lawrence said. “I’m saving my dreams and my hopes for that moment. Once I’m able to get on that stage then I can showcase what I’m really about.”
He and the Cowboys can take the first step toward that by clinching a playoff spot with a win on Sunday against the Buccaneers.