New Orleans Saints versus Carolina: 4 Panthers that can ruin Week 2

New Orleans Saints. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
New Orleans Saints. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) /
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New Orleans Saints
Brian Burns, Carolina Panthers. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) /

Brian Burns will look to rattle the New Orleans Saints offense.

Carolina’s defensive end Brian Burns terrorized Drew Brees when they played against each other, and there’s no reason Jameis Winston will face any different treatment.

Burns has been a sack extraordinaire for the Panthers in the last two seasons, accumulating 16.5 sacks, 83 combined tackles, 37 quarterback hits, and four passes defended.

Burns has been called a monster athlete, a one-of-a-kind talent, and just downright scary in his pass-rushing career. He also reportedly gained 12 pounds of muscle this offseason, so he probably doesn’t take too many rest days — he’ll come at New Orleans with every pound he’s got.

Last Sunday against the Jets, he picked up right where he left off in 2020 and dropped Zach Wilson to the ground. Burn’s trademark slogan should be “Welcome to the NFL” given how quick and smart he is at sniffing those sacking opportunities.

Despite Erik McCoy’s injury, New Orleans’ O-line should do a decent job at keeping Winston upright. Those high-paid bookends called Armstead and Ramczyk have a slogan too: “Thou shall not pass.”

So far, we’ve seen Winston stay calm and poised in the pocket, but if Burns turns up the heat even a little, this game could turn into a pick parade by halftime.

The Panthers allowed 258 yards through the air against the Jets, but most of that was momentum from Wilson’s late comeback effort. Winston, who only threw for 148 yards against the Packers, must be prepared to make decisions even faster and be on top of his game or else find himself in the warpath of the 6-foot-5, 250-pound EDGE rusher.