Someone over at 345 Park Avenue must really have it in for Carolina Panthers defensive end Brian Burns.
As first reported by NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero on Saturday afternoon, the league has handed the fourth-year defender a fine for his roughing the passer penalty in last week’s season opener against the Cleveland Browns. But that penalty, of course, didn’t come without some controversy.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) September 17, 2022
With the Panthers up by one and 1:13 remaining in the Week 1 clash, the Browns began their eventual game-winning drive at their own 25-yard line. That possession would be kickstarted when Burns ran into Cleveland quarterback Jacoby Brissett and was flagged for roughing.
But, upon multiple replay looks, did Burns really rough Brissett or was he dragged into him by offensive tackle Jedrick Willis . . . ?
I just gotta say it. The WORST Refs in Sports man smh pic.twitter.com/GKFPAQcuTg
— IamMontyFetti 🖤💙✊🏾 (@4MR_Monty) September 14, 2022
The flag resulted in a 15-yard push for the Browns, one that helped set up a booming 58-yard field goal from rookie kicker Cade York and a 26-24 triumph for the visitors.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the first bit of injustice to be delivered to Burns. Last year, the NFL did not fine New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones for grabbing and twisting Burns’ ankle in their Week 9 matchup.
So, perhaps the passer wasn’t the only one roughed over the past week.