Lawson, Adams main attractions during Auburn pro day
AUBURN, Ala. (AP) When Carl Lawson finished drills at Auburn's pro day, he'd wait to slap hands with the next guy in line, Montravius Adams.
The two defensive linemen remain in lockstep with each other after finishing their Auburn careers with their strongest seasons, together going through the NFL combine and Friday's workouts for NFL scouts and coaches.
They're the Tigers' top prospects for the April draft and some mock drafts project each as potential first-round picks though opinions seem to vary widely on both.
''He's competitive with me, I'm competitive with him,'' Adams said. ''And when he's not doing stuff - like today he wasn't doing the 40 but I did - he's always critiquing me, just helping me with the little things so both of us can be that much better. I just love him for that.''
The 6-foot-4, 304-pound Adams slightly improved his combine time in the 40 (4.87), running in 4.83 seconds unofficially in the fastest of two attempts, according to Auburn.
Lawson did only position drills after a strong combine when he bench-pressed 225 pounds 35 times, matching Utah offensive lineman Isaac Asiata for the combine high. The 6-foot-2, 259-pounder also clocked a 4.67-second 40 in Indianapolis.
That only solidified Lawson's belief that he's a first-round talent.
''Oh yeah, easily,'' said Lawson, a first-team All-Southeastern Conference performer who had nine sacks last season.'' If you followed me throughout my career, I watch film all the time and watch NFL film. I'm a guy who could consistently win one-on-ones on the edge, so I definitely feel like I'm a first-round talent.''
Other players going through pro day included safety Rudy Ford, cornerback Josh Holsey, offensive linemen Robert Leff and Alex Kozan, quarterback Jeremy Johnson and wide receivers Tony Stevens and Marcus Davis.
Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin was among those attending, with Lawson and Adams undoubtedly the main attraction for NFL teams. Lawson got a chance to chat with Tomlin.
''I was trying to tell him that I could drop (into coverage), and he was like, `Nah, I need you to rush the passer,''' Lawson said. ''I was like, `OK, that's what I do best.'''
Known more for that pass rushing prowess, Lawson did go through drills where he dropped back into coverage under the supervision of New York Jets assistant Kevin Greene, a Hall of Fame linebacker who played for Auburn.
Lawson had been able to text Greene during the season for advice before he took the Jets job in January.
''He's been a friend of mine for a while and now he's a coach,'' Lawson said. ''It was really fun. It was a great experience.''
NOTES: Ford ran the fastest 40 time among his ex-teammates with a 4.34 and 4.38. He missed the Sugar Bowl with a right ankle injury. He said he had only run the 40 a few times in preparation. ... Johnson's Auburn career fell far short of expectations, but the 6-4, 232-pounder feels he's a better fit in a pro-style offense. He's been working in Orlando with coach Tom Shaw and NFL quarterbacks Jameis Winston and Dak Prescott. ''I just need to be coached up a little more,'' Johnson said. ''Getting that chance to be with Jameis and Dak and coach Shaw, they taught me a lot.''
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