4 burning questions Panthers fans are asking ahead of Week 11 vs. Ravens

(Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images) Anthony Richardson
(Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images) Anthony Richardson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /

How much will Brian Burns and Derrick Brown cost the Carolina Panthers?

Are you paying Brian Burns and Derrick Brown this off-season? And if so, what kind of contract are you looking for if you were the FO? – Austin Bell

Great question, Austin.

If I were Scott Fitterer and the Carolina Panthers front office, I would pay Brian Burns and Derrick Brown this off-season.

It’s an easy no-brainer for me. Burns and Brown have turned into high-level players at their respective positions and are worthy of Pro Bowl honors this season.

Brown has turned into one of the 10 best defensive tackles in football, while Burns is on pace for a career year, which is currently on track to finish at 12 sacks and 17 tackles for loss.

Both players have established themselves as franchise players for a Panthers team in a quasi-rebuild following Matt Rhule’s firing and the trades involving Robbie Anderson and Christian McCaffrey. Stability on defense is important if Carolina wants to continue to build that side of the ball.

What type of contracts should the former first-round draft selections receive next offseason or in 2024, in Brown’s case?

Let’s start with Burns.

The former Florida State star would likely be asking for anywhere between $16.5 million and $20 million per season, and that might be the minimum for him considering his statistical pace. Burns has played like a borderline-elite edge rusher in 2022 and that to me signals he should command a similar per-year average and guaranteed money that Von Miller received from the Buffalo Bills in free agency.

As for Brown, the former Auburn Tiger has been playing at a high level, though the statistics haven’t exactly flashed elite status in any regard. When it comes to his potential deal, I think a Grover Stewart-type deal (three years, $10 million per year) or D.J. Reader (four years, $13.25 million per year) would be his ballpark when it comes to a potential cost-efficient contract.

Though, it would not surprise me to see Brown hit anywhere between $15-18 million per season if the Panthers decide to wait until 2024. Although they will undoubtedly pick up his fifth-year option next spring.

Either way, Fitterer needs to pay these two stud defensive players. It would be unwise to do so, in my opinion.