5 Carolina Panthers players entering 2021 on a short leash

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Justin Burris
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Justin Burris /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Juston Burris /

Juston Burris – Carolina Panthers S

There was a lot to like about Juston Burris’ contribution over his first few games with the Carolina Panthers. Unfortunately for the player and the organization, he wasn’t able to reach the same heights upon returning from a rib injury sustained at the Minnesota Vikings.

The safety gets another shot at providing his worth after the Panthers opted to release Tre Boston instead. Meaning a big opportunity awaits Burris in 2021 with Jeremy Chinn partnering with him on the backend.

Chinn is quickly emerging as one of the league’s most dynamic playmakers after a sensational rookie campaign. If the Southern Illinois product gets even better in his preferred position, then a Pro Bowl-caliber campaign isn’t entirely out of the question.

Nobody will benefit from this more than Burris. He’s been taking the majority of first-team reps at training camp so far and even though the Panthers seem keen to get Sam Franklin more involved this season, having a veteran presence alongside Chinn could transform this area of the field in Carolina.

Burris is playing for his future in the final year of his deal. If his level of production doesn’t return to that which we saw early in 2020, it might see the Panthers demote him from the starting lineup in favor of Franklin or someone else.