Shaq Lawson declares for 2016 NFL Draft

A big reason why the Clemson Tigers went 14-1, won the ACC, and played for their first national championship since 1981 this season was because of their dominant defense. One player that made a huge difference for the Tigers was defensive end Shaq Lawson.

Lawson has been considered one of the top players at his position for the 2016 NFL Draft and it was pretty clear that he was going to declare this season. On Wednesday, he posted an emotional goodbye to his coaches on Twitter, confirming his declaration for the Draft in April.

— Shaq Lawson (@Shaq_Lawson90) January 13, 2016

Lawson posted an impressive 2015 season, recording 59 tackles, 24.5 for loss, and 12.5 sacks. He is projected to be a top-15 pick in the Draft this year.

The Tigers also lost second-leading tackler and other starting defensive end Kevin Dodd. This means it will be a tough time to replace them, but head coach Dabo Swinney should do a good job rebuilding that defensive line.

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*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports