Redskins: 5 best and most realistic options for their first-round pick
Of all the top edge prospects that could be on the board with the No. 15 pick, Brian Burns seems to be the one that would most likely be available. There are a ton of talented pass rushers that could go inside the top 10, and while Burns may be competing for one of those roles, it seems more likely that he will go in the early teens than inside the top 10.
Burns is one of the more athletic edge prospects in this draft. At the combine, he blazed a terrific 40 time and looked really fluid in the on-field drills. It was expected that he would work out well, and his performance afforded him a chance to heat up his draft stock.
On tape, Burns has flashes of dominance on the edge. He has an elite first step and get-off that should help him beat the more athletic tackles at the NFL level. As a pass rushing prospect, he is clearly one of the more interesting options in the draft. However, there are some minor concerns that make it possible that he would fall to the 15th pick.
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The big concerns with Burns are somewhat related to his size. While Burns has good size and length, he played with a leaner frame at Florida State. He proved that he was able to bulk up to 249 pounds while keeping his athleticism at the combine, but teams will still likely be worried about how he will fare against bigger, stronger players at the NFL level. He has the athleticism needed to win consistently on the edge, but if he ends up being too light, he could get pushed around a bit more.
However, the bigger issue overall is that Burns’ run defense isn’t particularly good. It may have been because he played at the lighter weight, but compared to some of the other top edge rushers in this draft, Burns just didn’t seal the edge as well or make consistent stops in the run game. That’s not to say he can’t, but it’s an area for improvement at the next level.
With defensive line/edge prospects like Nick Bosa, Rashan Gary, Josh Allen, Montez Sweat, Clelin Ferrell, and Ed Oliver all fighting to be top 15 picks, Burns could fall out of circumstance. And if he’s on the board, he would fill a massive need for the Redskins.
Burns would give the ‘Skins an athletic speed rusher with great bend and fluid movement skills. And if he can’t be a great run defender at the next level, the squad will be able to rotate him in and out and allow him to wreak havoc in pass rushing situations. There is only one player that would be a better fit if on the board for the 15th pick.