Carolina Panthers: Brian Burns put the NFL on notice at Packers

(Dan Powers-USA TODAY NETWORK) Brian Burns
(Dan Powers-USA TODAY NETWORK) Brian Burns /
2 of 3
Carolina Panthers
(Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /

Brian Burns at the Packers

There wasn’t much belief that Brian Burns could have any sort of impact at the Packers. He was coming up against David Bakhtiari, who is widely regarded as arguably the NFL’s premier left tackle.

This is a challenge that Burns clearly relished. He was a relentless force on the edge and gave Bakhtiari his toughest test of the campaign by a considerable margin.

When the defensive end is in this sort of mood, there is little anybody can do to prevent him from getting into the backfield consistently. Burns’ stats might have looked even better had he finished off some explosive plays where he got to the spot quickly. But it’s hard to look at his contribution and not be impressed.

Burns set the tone.

And his defensive teammates followed.

Such was the level of disruption that Burns was causing, it freed up more space on the interior which Derrick Brown took full advantage of. The rookie enjoyed the finest game of his young career and a lot of that was to do with how much disruption his partner on the edge was causing on a consistent basis.

Burns finished the game with four tackles, two sacks, two tackles for loss, and two quarterback hits from 94 percent of the Carolina Panthers’ defensive snaps. He did go off late after bringing down Aaron Rodgers with an MRI sprain that leaves him questionable for the game at Washington next weekend.

Not having him would be a substantial blow. But if Burns doesn’t play another down this season, he’s firmly left his mark.