4 silver linings from the Panthers’ Week 9 loss at the Chiefs

(Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater and Matt Rhule
(Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater and Matt Rhule /
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Carolina Panthers
(Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /

4. Brian Burns’ influence on the Carolina Panthers continues to grow

The evolution of Brian Burns was once again evident during the Carolina Panthers’ defeat at the Chiefs. Much was expected of the defensive end coming into the campaign as the team’s No. 1 pass-rushing option and his level of performance is something that has perhaps even exceeded expectations at this juncture.

Burns was a constant thorn in Kansas City’s side with consistent pressure on Patrick Mahomes. But not having anyone else stepping up to assist in this area is hurting the team’s ability to get opposing offenses off the field.

How the former first-round pick wasn’t credited with a sack when he took down Mahomes for a huge loss is quite unbelievable. However, this was another fine example of how much Burns has improved from a pass-rushing specialist to a well-rounded edge defender who deciphers plays extremely well.

Burns is getting to the spot at rapid speed and once he becomes more consistent in finishing off plays, then the sky is the limit. The Panthers have a star on their hands in the Florida State product and the is no denying his ability to become one of the NFL’s premier players at the position in the coming years.

His 85.0 grade from Pro Football Focus through nine weeks is further evidence of just how well Burns is performing. And with Yetur Gross-Matos returning to the lineup sooner rather than later, it could give them a devastating pass-rushing tandem.