5 Panthers players who need to become alphas at 2021 training camp

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Donte Jackson
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Donte Jackson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /

Brian Burns – Carolina Panthers DE

Everyone associated with the Carolina Panthers is looking to Brian Burns for elite production and leadership in equal measure in 2021. The strides made by the defensive end in Year 2 of his professional career indicate that greatness is sure to follow, with a Pro Bowl-caliber campaign a realistic target to aim for.

Burns is an edge rusher that takes his craft extremely seriously. His explosiveness and refined moves make it extremely difficult for opposing offensive linemen to stop. Something the Panthers can put to good use with more in the way of talent around the former Florida State star.

We didn’t get to see a lot of Burns during team drills at voluntary OTAs and mandatory minicamp due to a clean-up procedure earlier in the offseason. This isn’t expected to see the player miss time at training camp.

Seeing what areas of his game have been developed since the 2020 campaign came to a conclusion will tell us plenty about what the ceiling might be for Burns in 2021. But there is more than a big suspicion that the sky is the limit.

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Burns looks every bit the elite pass-rusher and alpha the Panthers drafted him to be. He holds himself to extremely high standards and if he can bring his game on to another level next season, then Carolina’s defense will be a supreme force as a result.