Brian Burns stars in preseason debut

Football is finally back, kinda. After kicking off with the Hall of Fame game a week ago, the 2019 NFL preseason is in full swing following 10 games last night.

Former Florida State star defensive end Brian Burns was one of many high-profile rookies (Kyler Murray, Daniel Jones, Dwayne Haskins, etc) debuting on Thursday and he certainly didn’t disappoint under the spotlight. Burns finished Carolina’s 23-13 preseason week one victory over Chicago with two tackles, two tackles for loss, and two sacks despite not playing much of the second half. He showed off exactly why the Panthers selected him at No. 16 overall, because he’s an athletic freak that can disrupt passing games.

On his first sack, Burns used his power and eyes to bring down Chicago’s Chase Daniel. Burns exploded off of the edge, used a spin move on the left tackle before shoving him to the ground, and then found Daniel with his eyes before shifting back into position to make the play. His awareness is something you just can’t teach.

Burns got home for sack number two on the next defensive stand for Carolina. Technically, only one offensive play was run by the Bears between the Florida native’s two monster sacks. This time, Burns displayed the speed and agility that could make him a standout pass-rusher for years to come in the NFL. At the snap, Chicago shifted its offensive line to the right while running a play-action back to the left side of the field, leaving a single tight end isolated against Burns. Bad idea.

The 6-foot-5, 250-pound defensive end shifted laterally while reading the play before bursting forward with such speed that Bears TE Ian Bunting was simply left to watch as Burns brought down Daniel yet again. Seriously, I don’t think Bunting even got a hand on him.

Carolina fans will be looking forward to watching how Burns develops throughout his career. Their expectations can only be rising following an impressive professional debut.

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