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Biggest problem for Bengals' O-line? Rookie LB Carl Lawson breaking out

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    Katherine TerrellESPN Staff Writer 

CINCINNATI -- There's a question that always presents itself during the dog days of training camp.

If a player is standing out, is he standing out because of his talent, or because he's playing against inferior talent?

In the case of Cincinnati Bengals rookie defender Carl Lawson, it might be a little bit of both.

Carl Lawson was consistently able to put pressure on the Bengals' quarterbacks during Tuesday's practice. Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire

For five straight plays, Lawson essentially terrorized quarterbacks AJ McCarron and Jeff Driskel. The sequence went as follows:

  • McCarron fires a touchdown to Alonzo Russell, but it was questionable whether it actually counted. Because the quarterbacks are not allowed to be hit in practice, it can be a judgement call as to whether they were sacked prior to getting off the pass. Lawson beat left tackle Eric Winston and was barreling toward McCarron on the play.

  • McCarron attempts another pass, but Lawson and Carlos Dunlap were in his face. Sack.

  • Lawson easily shakes off Winston again to get to McCarron. Winston slams his helmet in frustration.

  • On the next play, against the third-team offense, Lawson beats Landon Lechler to sack Driskel.

  • Lawson bull-rushes Lechler again.

Lawson later got a few snaps against the first-team offense. He wasn't quite as dominant, as Cedric Ogbuehi and tight end Tyler Eifert did their jobs when lined up against him. But he was still giving Ogbuehi all he could handle.

Lawson played his best when lined up at defensive end on Tuesday, which comes at no surprise. He spent his entire career at Auburn at defensive end and is learning how to be a linebacker in the NFL.

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