IRVING, Texas -- The hospital bracelet was still on DeMarcus Lawrence's left wrist.
On Thursday morning, Lawrence saw his first son, Damari, born thanks to a FaceTime call. DeMarcus Lawrence arrived around midnight after his flight was delayed and was on a plane Friday night, arriving back in Dallas at 5:30 a.m.
“The only thing I had time for was to take a shower and get here,” the Dallas Cowboys’ second-round pick said.
By the afternoon session Lawrence was able to take it off, keeping it in his locker.
The short amount of time Lawrence had with his son, who was due May 27, had a profound effect on Lawrence.
“I didn’t think a kid could change your life just by birth that way,” Lawrence said. “He made me so humble. Just made me open my eyes and make me look at the bigger picture of life.”
Lawrence is in the early stages of learning the Cowboys’ defense, but coordinator Rod Marinelli likes what he saw in Lawrence at Boise State and the brief time he has been with him.
“He’s got good stuff,” Marinelli said.
“I think he's really smooth. He's got a great feel for a reaction to movement. That's what I look for, that's something you can't test, you got to see it. He's strong in here, pad level gets down, smooth, really, really good instincts, that's our job to build on it. He's going to be a big boy, a big man.”
The Cowboys have big expectations on Lawrence, but have been careful to avoid the comparisons to DeMarcus Ware. When Ware arrived as a first-round pick in 2005, the initial spelling of his first name was Demarcus. At Boise State, Lawrence’s name was spelled with a lower-case M. He said on Saturday, it should be a capital M.
“That’s how it is on my birth certificate,” Lawrence said. “My mom always spelled my name with a capital M, so I’m going to keep it like that.”
Ware put up a team-record 119 sacks in his nine seasons. He made the Pro Bowl seven times. Lawrence had 20 sacks in two seasons at Boise State.
“They want me to come in and be the best player I can be and that’s just the pressure on me that I put on myself,” Lawrence said. “I come in with high expectations and come to get the job done.”
The Cowboys paid a price to get Lawrence in giving up a third-round pick to the Washington Redskins. If they have been shy about the Ware comparisons, they were more than willing to say he was the third-best right defensive end in the draft behind Jadeveon Clowney and Anthony Barr, who were the first and ninth picks of the draft.
“I ain’t going to put no more pressure on myself than I already have,” Lawrence said. “I feel like I’m the best and I’m just going to go out there and prove it each and every day. You can’t let your words speak. You got to let your play speak for you. That’s what I’m going to go out there and do.”