Falcons: Are the Panthers going to let Brian Burns walk?

NFL: DEC 24 Lions at Panthers

The Falcons have a plethora of needs at premium positions. It all starts with the quarterback, but they also must address the wide receiver, cornerback, and EDGE rooms.

Wide receiver has some high-profile names that could be in play with the Falcons first-round pick, while free agency doesn’t have as many enticing options. Cornerback could be addressed through the draft, free agency, or even a trade. The same could be said for the EDGE position; however, there is something special about the crop of free agent pass rushers this offseason.

One of the marquee stars among them is Brian Burns, who the Falcons actually inquired about this past season, but the Panthers would not budge on moving him. Now, he’s set to test free agency, and it doesn’t appear he’s any closer to a new deal with his current team.

The 25-year-old just wrapped up his fifth season and has already accrued 46 sacks, never finishing with fewer than 7.5 in a season. He’s among the game’s elite when it comes to pass rushers and is just entering his prime. Landing Burns in free agency would give the Falcons their best pass rusher since John Abraham was roaming the Georgia Dome over a decade ago. It’s been that long since Atlanta has featured a premier sack artist, but if the Falcons are going to acquire Brian Burns, it’s likely going to have to come via trade.

On the Pat McAfee show, Adam Schefter reported it’s likely the Panthers use the franchise tag on Burns to keep him in Carolina.

This is a no-brainer decision for the Panthers if they can’t get a long-term deal done, but it doesn’t necessarily mean he will be playing in Carolina next season. Depending on how far apart the two sides are on a new contract, they could finally decide to trade Burns, and the Falcons have already shown interest.

I would expect Terry Fontenot to pick up the phone if the Panthers make Brian Burns available, but it won’t be easy to get a deal done with a division rival. Of all the potential EDGE targets for the Falcons this offseason, I would consider Burns one of the most unlikely.

Photographer: John Byrum/Icon Sportswire

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: