Giants OLB Brian Burns Named as Traded Player Who Will Make Biggest Impact on New Team

Veteran edge rusher Brian Burns is among ten traded players whose presence should be definitely felt by their new teams.
Dec 17, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers linebacker Brian Burns (0) is
Dec 17, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers linebacker Brian Burns (0) is / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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The New York Giants need as many players as possible to make an impact this season. 

While they have several candidates capable of doing so—receiver Malik Nabers, linebacker Bobby Okereke, defensive lineman Dexter Lawrence II, and outside linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux all come to mind—it's the player they traded for in the offseason, outside linebacker Brian Burns, who could end up making the biggest impact.

So believes's Tom Blair, who ranked the top ten trade acquisitions from this past off-season. Blair put Burns at No. 4 on his list but admitted that he should have moved him up to No. 1. 

“Of everyone in my top 10, he seems like the safest lock to play like a star for his new team in 2024," Blair said. 

“Burns has had a double-digit pressure rate every year of his career, per Next Gen Stats, and he should team with Kayvon Thibodeaux to boost a defense that finished 30th in pressure rate last season.”

The Giants' pass rush lacks true firepower, an underrated yet very glaring problem for several seasons, starting with their trade of defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, the last of their homegrown pass rushers, after the 2017 season.

The Giants tried to supplement their pass rush with free agents such as Olivier Vernon and Markus Golden, with whom they had a modicum of success. 

However, general manager Joe Schoen prioritized improving the pass rush unit. This process began with the selection of Thibodeaux, who last year led the Giants in sacks with 11.5, in the first round of the 2022 draft.

Blair's selection of Burns does come with a caveat, however. He notes that any potential impact made by Burns could be offset by the uncertainties surrounding the Giants' offense, particularly the quarterback situation. The team has already said that Daniel Jones will be the starter once he's cleared to return full-time from his ACL tear.

Blair's concerns are legitimate. Before his season-ending injury last season, Jones had thrown three times as many interceptions as touchdowns. But to be fair, Jones didn't get much support from his offensive line, which gave up 30 sacks in the six games the quarterback played. 

With a (presumably) better offensive line in front of him and better weapons in the passing game, the hope is that the offense can get back on track to where Burns' anticipated contributions are felt. 

Ezekiel Trezevant


Ezekiel is a former Sports Editor from the Western Herald and former Atlanta Falcons beat writer.