Carolina Panthers camp: 5 things we learned from Week 1

(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey
(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Brian Burns /

Brian Burns bulks up for his second season

There are high hopes that Brian Burns can become a prolific pass-rusher for the Carolina Panthers in 2020. The 2019 first-round pick showed enormous promise during his rookie season. And there is every chance he can thrive even further in a more prominent starting role next time around.

The defensive end has been working hard on enhancing his physicality this offseason. And he certainly looks the part from team photos during drills.

Burns claims to have added 15 pounds of muscle this offseason in a bid to get stronger as he looks to make the most out of this increased opportunity. A wrist injury hampered his chances of playing to his full potential as a rookie. But the pass-rusher now appears at full health with a more prototypical NFL body for the position.

The former Florida State star is eager to line up alongside defensive tackle duo Kawann Short and No. 7 overall pick Derrick Brown. Their presence on the interior should free up plenty of space for Burns and others to do damage. And this is something the second-year pro wants to take full advantage of.

"“I need those guys, man. They’re going to take up a lot of attention, and hopefully, I’ll have a lot of one-on-ones on the outside. My goals are kind of classified. I can’t really put those out there. Ultimately, I really just want to win more games than we did last year and just have a great season.”"

Although Burns was reluctant to reveal his goals. Achieving double-digit sacks is a realistic target to aim for. There is a chance the player could get in the mid-teens if he exceeds expectations. And this might also result in a first Pro Bowl selection.