CHARLOTTE — The Panthers formalized what was widely expected Friday, officially picking up the fifth-year option on defensive end Brian Burns' rookie contract.
Burns is now under contract through the 2023 season, but that could also be a formality.
General manager Scott Fitterer has already identified Burns as a priority, and hopes to talk to him about a long-term contract extension.
The 2019 first-rounder is coming off his first Pro Bowl appearance.
His 25.5 sacks in his first three seasons are second-most all-time in franchise history, behind only Julius Peppers, who had 30.0 in his first three years.
Brian Burns ranks ninth in franchise history with 25.5 career sacks, the most by all NFL players that entered the league since 2019.