Brian Burns

Florida State

Prospect Info

College
Florida State
Hometown
Class
FL
Junior
Height
Weight
Arms
6' 5"
249 lbs
33 7/8”
Hands
10”

Prospect Grade

6.09
Should Become Instant Starter
How We Grade

2019 Draft Results

Drafted by
Carolina
Panthers
Round 1 ‧ Pick 16
Go to Pick
40 Yard Dash
4.53u
Seconds
 
Bench Press
--
Reps
 
Vertical Jump
36.0
INCHES
 
Broad Jump
129.0
INCHES
 
3 Cone Drill
7.01
Seconds
 
20 Yd Shuttle
--
Seconds
 
60 Yd Shuttle
--
Seconds
 

Playlist

Burns helped Fort Lauderdale's American Heritage High School win state titles as a sophomore and junior, and then was named a first-team Class 5A All-State pick his senior year (he had 28 sacks over his junior and senior seasons). The five-star recruit earned Freshman All-American honors from multiple outlets after leading all first-year players with 9.5 sacks (24 total tackles, 10.5 for loss) in 13 games as a reserve hybrid end/rush linebacker. Burns started all 13 games at defensive end in 2017, posting 48 stops, 13.5 for loss, 4.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, and two blocked punts (tied for third in the FBS) for the Seminoles. His play against Clemson (4.5 tackles for loss, two sacks) got NFL scouts intrigued in his potential. Despite FSU's struggles in 2018, his play stood out enough that he earned first-team All-ACC notice from league coaches and media. He led his team with 15.5 tackles for loss and 10 sacks among his 52 stops, while also breaking up three passes and forcing three fumbles.
By Lance Zierlein
NFL Analyst
Draft Projection
Round 1
NFL Comparison
Leonard Floyd
Overview
Long, thin pass-rush specialist who possesses elite get-off and stride length to simply outrun overmatched tackles around the rush arc and into the backfield. Burns' edge speed and varied rush approach should translate to the league, but his skinny frame and lack of play strength are absolutely concerns moving forward. While some view him as a pass rusher only, it might be a waste not to utilize his blue-chip athletic ability in space as a hybrid linebacker.
Strengths
  • Basketball athlete with silky hips and sudden feet
  • Upfield burst forces tackles out of pass slides and into gallops and sprints
  • Alters rush speeds with sudden bursts around or inside the pass set
  • Long third step propels him to clearance at the top of the arc
  • Tremendous lower-body flexion for 45-degree edge bend
  • Ability and quickness to shadow scramblers once he finds the pocket
  • Hits well-timed jump-cut counters back inside
  • Capable, smooth spin moves in either direction
  • Quick lateral slides help find the B-gap
  • Arm-over or upper-body turn to quickly bypass edge blocks
  • Fluidity to potentially drop and cover
  • Good speed to pursue as tackler
Weaknesses
  • Thin frame with spindly limbs
  • Frame might not be able to handle enough weight
  • Lacks functional play strength
  • Lacks necessary dog for consistent combat at point of attack
  • Gives away his position when setting edge
  • Allows length to go to waste, catching too many blocks with shoulders
  • Sticks to blocks once he loses his frame
  • Struggles to play through redirect blocks on inside moves
  • Will have issues converting speed to power at top of the rush
  • Needs more strength and force as hand fighter
GRADE
9.00-10
Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-8.99
Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99
Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49
Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.50-6.99
Chance to become Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.00-6.49
Should become instant starter
5.50-5.99
Chance to become NFL starter
5.20-5.49
NFL backup or special teams potential
5.01-5.19
Better-than-average chance to make NFL roster
5.00
50-50 Chance to make NFL roster
4.75-4.99
Should be in an NFL training camp
4.50-4.74
Chance to be in an NFL training camp
NO GRADE
Likely needs time in developmental league