Panthers' Biggest Offseason Mistake Earns Dubious Honor

Bleacher Report called the Panthers' trade of Brian Burns one of the offseason's worst moves
Bleacher Report called the Panthers' trade of Brian Burns one of the offseason's worst moves / Morgan Tencza-USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Panthers enjoyed a successful offseason by most accounts, reworking the offensive foundation in the NFL Draft and free agency. However, not every move was a successful one.

Bleacher Report recently ranked the six worst decisions of the offseason and gave the Panthers the unfortunate honor of fourth on the list. Carolina's decision to trade Brian Burns came a year too late, wrecking the return GM Dan Morgan ultimately received for the star pass rusher.

Burns was traded for second and fifth-round picks, as well as a mid-round swap, just one season after the Rams reportedly offered a pair of first-round selections for him.

Bleacher Report Ranks Brian Burns Trade as One of NFL's Worst Offseason Moves

As Bleacher Report puts it, "Burns racked up a respectable eight sacks, 16 tackles for loss and 50 total tackles with the Panthers last season. But they slogged through a lost 2-15 campaign and then sold low on him this offseason."

The Panthers' draft is exciting, though "considering Carolina could have received a pair of first-rounders for the same player less than two years ago, this is a tough decision to defend," concludes Alex Kay.

In five seasons with the Panthers, Burns had 246 tackles, 46 sacks, 13 deflected passes and eight forced fumbles. The two-time Pro Bowler quickly became one of the NFL's best defenders, though he'll now try to help bring the Giants back to contention.

Carolina isn't the only team in the NFC South that made the list. The Atlanta Falcons' decision to draft Michael Penix Jr. at No. 8 after signing Kirk Cousins ranked as the offseason's worst decision, so at least we can all laugh at a division foe.

It hurts to see Burns go, but the future looks bright for the Panthers overall.

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