DeMarcus Lawrence Finds Redemption After Horrible Fumble Sequence Against Lions

Dan Carson@@DrCarson73Trending Lead WriterJanuary 5, 2015

Dallas Cowboys defensive end Demarcus Lawrence (90) recovers the ball after sacking Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) causing a fumble during the second half of an NFL wildcard playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 4, 2015, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys won 24-20. (AP Photo/Brandon Wade)
Brandon Wade/Associated Press

DeMarcus Lawrence nearly grew horns Sunday night.

The Dallas Cowboys' rookie defensive end erred dangerously close to goat status (of the Steve Bartman variety) at AT&T Stadium after coughing up a game-ensuring fumble recovery against the Detroit Lions in the NFC Wild Card Round.

Lawrence, a rookie defensive end out of Boise State, snapped up a Matthew Stafford fumble in the final two minutes of the game only to have the ball immediately ripped from his grasp. The Lions recovered the ensuing fumble, wiping out the Cowboys' chance to ice the game and giving Stafford and company another chance to score in the waning moments.

The Cauldron (h/t NextImpulseSports.com's Sean Wagner-McGough) crafted a GIF of the fumble recovery fumble (or FRF). Sometimes you need to listen to Mick. Sometimes you need to stay down.

The Cauldron

Redemption would come for Lawrence, however.

The Cowboys lineman stayed in the game and made a pivotal play on a 4th-and-short situation for the Lions offense. Penetrating the line, Lawrence slipped around Lions tackle Riley Reiff and ripped down on Stafford's throwing arm, causing a fumble. Having learned his lesson, Lawrence grabbed the loose ball and remained on the ground.

Vine user @Cvbg22 uploaded video of Lawrence's game-clinching strip sack. Sometimes, it pays not to be a hero.

The Cowboys held on to secure a 24-20 victory over Detroit. After the game, Lawrence told reporters he learned from his mistake and appreciated receiving a chance to redeem himself.

"I can't let my teammates down," Lawrence told reporters. "Coach Leon Lett gave me another chance to go out there and capitalize on the opportunity, and it happened."

Lawrence said he's aware of the significance of Lett—the perpetrator of perhaps the most notorious lineman fumble in NFL history—keeping him positive after the blunder.

"I grew up a Cowboys fan," Lawrence said. "I remember that play. It's just me as a rookie. It's just a big lesson learned. Two minutes on the clock and you have to stay down."

Dallas will head to Green Bay to take on the Packers on Sunday. Lawrence will have his hands full with decidedly quicker prey in Aaron Rodgers.

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