Tarboro, NC | 6034 | 265 | 4.70E | 2018
High motor player with the frame to play any position along the defensive line, he could bulk up and kick inside, he can play defensive end in either a 3-4 or 4-3 scheme and is athletic enough to play outside linebacker, which some NFL teams could also envision him. Really does a nice job of shielding blocks and bounces off blockers—grab some Fixodent, he’s hard to get a grip of. He caused three forced fumbles in 2016. A returning team captain, he brings plenty of experience as a fifth-year senior with 41 games played, including 26 starts. He has racked up 24.5 tackles for loss, including 16 sacks over the past two seasons. He finished second amongst defensive lineman with 731 snaps in 2015 on a team that featured a dozen players drafted. A vocal leader and self-described ‘loud person.’ Defensive line coach Larry Johnson offered up the following assessment, “He plays the run really well, he can play in front of a 320-pound tackle easily. He’s just so strong, so fluid and very unassuming — he does his job and everything we ask him to do.” He had surgery to repair a torn labrum in the Spring of 2016—an injury he reportedly played through during the previous season.
2016: Lewis started all 13 games and was a leader for the nation’s sixth-ranked total defensive unit, one that was No. 3 in both scoring and passing efficiency defense, by contributing 29 tackles and team-high in tackles-for-loss (10.5 for 61 yards) and quarterback sacks (8.0 for 55 yards).
2015: Lewis started all 13 games for the 12-1 Buckeyes and ranked sixth on the team from his defensive end position in total tackles with 54 … included was 14.0 tackles-for-loss (second-most on the team behind Joey Bosa) and a team-high 8.0 quarterback sacks with both figures among the Top 10 in the Big Ten Conference.
2014: Lewis played in all 15 games for the College Football Playoff national champions … his 224 plays included 201 snaps on the defensive line with the rest special team’s appearances.
High School/Personal: Lewis was a four-star defensive end prospect (Rivals, Scout, 247Sports) from Tarboro, N.C., and Tarboro High School … a Top 25 defensive end who comes from a tremendous program at Tarboro … the Vikings, coached by Jeff Craddock, won three consecutive North Carolina Class 2A state championships and had won 21 consecutive games before falling in the 2012 state championship to East Lincoln … Lewis was injured in the title game but still played and earned defensive player of the game honors … he finished his senior season with 13 sacks and was named to the Associated Press all-state team … he had 12 sacks among his 63 tackles as a junior … is the son of Tyronda Whitaker, and a proud big brother to three younger brothers: Kenai, Tylie and Christian.