When you think of Iowa defensive backs, you think of versatility and Phil Parker. With AJ Lawson, Phil Parker went out and found him some versatility.
Lawson, from Decatur, Illinois, did everything for Macarthur High School. He was a defensive back spending time at both safety and corner on defense, while also being a leading receiver on offense and serving as the team’s return man.
The 3-star prospect committed to Iowa back in June as a part of Iowa’s big recruiting push. Today he’s officially a Hawkeye.
Lawson has good hands a great ball skills for someone projected to be a defensive back. That’s largely attributed to his background as a wide receiver.
As a senior, Lawson racked up681 receiving yards and 7 TDs on 39 catches (17.5 ypc) as a receiver. He shows great acceleration and the ability to outrun defenders.
At the next level, those attributes, along with his strong ability to track the ball will serve him well as he looks to run with receivers and play the ball. Lawson also tallied a pair of interceptions this season, demonstrating those skills will translate.
It will be interesting to see where Parker chooses to slot Lawson in. He spent plenty of time lined up out wide at the high school level, but Rivals projects him as a safety. They also rate him 3-stars, as does 247 Sports. Lawson chose Iowa over offers from 10 schools including Minnesota and most of the MAC.
Welcome aboard, officially, AJ Lawson!