Manny Lawson


Widely considered one of the finest athletes to ever play at North Carolina State

Manny Lawson
  • Position: Linebacker
  • Height: 6'5
  • Weight: 240 lbs.
  • College: North Carolina State
  • Experience: 9 years


More Information

Had promising 2007 season cut short due to knee injury suffered in practice leading up to third game of season…Widely considered one of the finest athletes to ever play at North Carolina State…Made switch from a college defensive end to an outside linebacker in first NFL season…Had a breakout game in 49ers 20-13 win vs. St. Louis (9-17-06) when he recorded two sacks and was named Diet Pepsi Defensive Rookie of the Week for his performance…In 18 career games and 13 starts, has totaled 65 tackles, 2.5 sacks, two fumble recoveries, one interception, one blocked punt and four passes defense

Originally a first round (22nd pick overall) draft choice by San Francisco in 2006...Was the second of two first-round picks.

Academics First - When the 49ers drafted Manny, they received a player that not only had ideal physical attributes, but one who also possessed an impressive mental capacity. Manny, whose father was in the Air Force and mother was a residential nurse, was taught the values of discipline at an early age. Academics always came first and athletics were just for fun. Anything below a B+ was not satisfactory to his parents. Fast forward a few years and the early lessons paid off as Manny graduated with a degree in industrial engineering from North Carolina State. He then went on to score a 43 out of 50 on the Wonderlic test, which was tied for the highest of his draft class.



played 16 games, 20 tackles, 1.5 sacks


played 15 games, 52 tackles, 4 sacks 


played 16 games, 30 tackles, 2 sacks 

Played in every game with 15 starts, and started in Wild Card playoff ... Had 78 tackles, 1.5 sacks, three passes defensed and two special teams tackles ... Six QB pressures, and ranked fourth on team in tackles for loss (seven) ... Supported effort for Bengals defense to finish season ranked seventh in NFL in fewest yards allowed per game (316.3), 10th in fewest rushing yards allowed (104.7), fourth in fewest yards allowed per offensive play (5.0), eighth in fewest yards per rushing play (3.9) and fifth in total sacks (45).

Had three tackles Sept. 11 at Cleveland, helping hold Browns to 83 rushing yards on 26 attempts (3.2) … On Sept. 18 at Denver, led team in passes defensed (two) and had six tackles … Three tackles Oct. 9 at Jacksonville … Had three tackles and a pass defensed Oct. 16 vs. Indianapolis … Three tackles Oct. 30 at Seattle, two of which were for losses … Three tackles Nov. 6 at Tennessee, including one for a three-yard loss against RB Chris Johnson … Led team in tackles Nov. 13 vs. Pittsburgh, with a personal season-best 11 stops, including a shared sack ... Five tackles Nov. 27 vs. Cleveland … Nine tackles (second on team, led front seven) Dec. 4 at Pittsburgh … Five tackles, including two for losses, a sack and two QB pressures Dec. 11 vs. Houston … Five tackles Dec. 18 at St. Louis, along with one QB pressure ... Three tackles Dec. 24 vs. Arizona ... Eight tackles (third on team) Jan. 1 vs. Baltimore ... Five tackles in Wild Card playoff 1-7-12 at Houston.

2010 (BENGALS)
On Oct. 10 vs. Philadelphia, brought down QB Kevin Kolb for his first sack and forced fumble of the season … Helped key win Oct. 17 vs. Oakland with INT against Jason Campbell … In win Oct. 31 vs. Denver, sacked Kyle Orton and forced a fumble that LB Takeo Spikes recovered to set up TD for 24-10 lead … Also had a pass defensed vs. Denver … Had a shared sack in win 1-2-11 vs. Arizona, and had season-best seven tackles

2009 (49ERS)

  • Led the team with a career-high 6.5 sacks and tied the franchise record for most FFs by a 49ers linebacker in a single season (4).
  • Pressured QB Kurt Warner into throwing an INT to CB Nate Clements at Arz. (9/13).
  • Tallied a career-high 11 tackles at Min. (9/27).
  • Registered a sack and later forced a fumble that was returned for a TD by DT Ray McDonald in the 4th qtr. vs. StL (10/4).
  • Sacked QB Matt Schaub at Hou. (10/25) and sacked QB Vince Young vs. Ten. (11/8). With a full sack in 3-straight games [at GB - QB Aaron Rodgers (11/22); vs. Jax. - QB David Garrard (11/29); at Sea. - QB Matt Hassel­beck (12/6)] he became the first 49er to accomplish the feat since DE Andre Carter in 2002.

2008 (49ERS)

  • Blocked punt in 1st qtr. and tallied 2 special teams tackles at Sea. (9/14).
  • Left game at NO (9/28) with a hamstring strain following a kickoff in 3rd qtr.
  • Blocked a 35-yd. FG attempt in 3rd qtr., which was returned 74 yds. by CB Nate Clements for a TD at NYG (10/19).
  • Posted a career-high 10 tackles vs. Sea. (10/26) to go along with his first sack of season.
  • Tallied 5 tackles, 1 sack, 1 FF, 1 FR and 1 PD at Dal. (11/23). The FR occurred on a QB Tony Romo lateral that was intended for RB Tashard Choice, which Lawson broke up and recovered.


  • Tallied 14 tackles and one pass defensed in two starts at left outside linebacker before suffering a season-ending knee injury in practice the week of the Pittsburgh game.
  • Made a career-high nine tackles in season-opening 20-17 victory vs. Arizona (9-10).
  • Tallied five tackles and one pass defensed in 17-16 win at St. Louis (9-16).
  • Placed on injured reserve (9-21) after tearing ACL during practice and underwent successful surgery (9-26)


  • Played in all 16 games with nine starts and totaled 65 total tackles, one interception, 2.5 sacks, two fumble recoveries and one blocked punt.
  • In first home game vs. St. Louis (9-17), posted two sacks in 49ers 20-13 victory and was voted Week 2 Diet Pepsi NFL Defensive Rookie of the Week.
  • Blocked punt early in third quarter vs. Oakland (10-8), allowing 49ers to start at Raiders’ nine-yard line and helped set up QB Alex Smith’s six-yard touchdown pass to WR Arnaz Battle. Also deflected pass in fourth quarter, which was then intercepted by CB Walt Harris.
  • Recovered a fumble off a QB Brad Johnson sack to help position 49ers for a K Joe Nedney field goal in 9-3 victory vs. Minnesota (11-5).
  • Grabbed first career interception at St. Louis (11-26), picking off a QB Marc Bulger pass intended for WR Torry Holt.


  • Teamed with DE Mario Williams in college to form a premier pass rushing tandem in college football as the duo would combine to sack quarterbacks a total of 39 times during their final two years.
  • All-Atlantic Coast Conference first-team selection by The NFL Draft Report as a senior after registering 58 tackles, 21 pressures, four passes defensed and 10.5 sacks.
  • Ranks second on N.C. State’s all-time record list with seven blocked kicks and fourth with 20.5 sacks. Led nation in 2002 with three blocked punts.
  •  Competed on Wolfpack track squad in spring of 2003, and in his first meet, won the long jump and the triple jump in the Patriot Games. Also captured first place in the Carolina Heels Challenge in the long jump and second in the triple jump. Posted fastest time in 60 meter hurdles (indoors) for N.C. State that season (8.55).
  • Majored in industrial engineering.


  • Attended Eastern Wayne (Goldsboro, NC) High School, where he was rated as one of the Top 25 players (#21) by Super Prep in the state of North Carolina during his senior year.
  •  Recorded 54 tackles and 11 sacks on defense and also rushed for 456 yards on offense during his final season, picking up Conference Defensive Player of the Year honors.
  • Father is a retired member of the Air Force.
  • Born Manny Lawson (7-3-84) in Goldsboro, NC.


  • Total Tackles: 9 vs. Arizona (9-10-07)
  • Solo: 6 (two times) Last vs. Minnesota (11-5-06)
  • Assists: 5 vs. Oakland (10-8-06)
  • Sacks: 2 vs. St. Louis (9-17-06)
  • Passes Defensed: 1 (four times) Last at St. Louis (9-16-07)
  • Interceptions: 1 at St. Louis (11-26-06)


  • 2006 - Diet Pepsi Defensive Rookie of the Week (Week 2)

Manny in the News

2017 Active Roster

Contact Info

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Neil S. Schwartz

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