Brian Burns & Yetur Gross-Matos – Carolina Panthers DEs
This selection is more in hope than anything else. But the defensive end tandem of Brian Burns and Yetur Gross-Matos certainly possesses enough potential to be among the team’s best in 2022.
After the Carolina Panthers let Haason Reddick walk in free agency for the Philadelphia Eagles, the onus will now be on Burns and Gross-Matos to take the necessary leaps forward in their respective careers. The jury is still out as to whether or not they can put up the lofty numbers needed, but the coaching staff is depending on them to do so.
Burns looks set for superstardom after gaining nine sacks and a first Pro Bowl selection in 2021. There will be some significant attention coming his way from opposing protection schemes next time around, which will be a big obstacle to overcome and something that could earn the former first-round pick out of Florida State a substantial pay increase if the right development is shown.
There appears more uncertainty about Gross-Matos despite the Penn State product flashing over his first two years in Carolina. Perhaps the promise of additional reps will bring out the best in him, but there’s just no telling for sure right now.
If the Panthers aren’t truly convinced, then they could bring in someone else to boost depth. Hopefully, Burns and Gross-Matos can generate the pressure needed to make serious waves.