Panthers Place OLB Marquis Haynes On IR; Latest On Brian Burns

The Panthers’ edge rushing contingent will be shorthanded to start the season. The team announced on Monday that Marquis Haynes has been placed on IR. He will be sidelined for at least four weeks as a result.

Haynes has served in a backup role throughout his his five-year tenure in Carolina. The 29-year-old saw an uptick in usage last season, though, logging a 41% snap share. He translated that increased workload into career highs in sacks (five), pressures (16) and QB hits (13). His absence will thus be felt by a Panthers team looking to improve on the edge in 2023.

Carolina was long connected to additions to its pass-rushing contingent, and it thus came as no surprise that veteran Justin Houston was signed in August. The four-time Pro Bowler inked a one-year deal including $6MM guaranteed, giving the Panthers a complimentary option opposite Brian Burns. Houston led the Ravens with 9.5 sacks last season, and production anywhere near that level would make his addition a worthwhile one. Haynes’ absence will likely lead to a larger-than-expected workload for the 34-year-old early in the campaign.

With that said, Haynes had been dealing with a lingering back injury through the summer. Head coach Frank Reich said the team had been expecting the former former fourth-rounder to miss Week 1, so today’s news comes as little surprise. It is signficant, however, given the uncertainty surrounding Burns’ availability for the team’s regular season opener.

The latter has been with the team throughout training camp as talks continue on a multi-year extension. Burns remains hopeful that something will be worked out in the near future, but Reich confirmed on Monday that the 25-year-old did not take part in practice due to a personal matter. With his financial future beyond 2023 uncertain, questions have been raised about whether or not Burns will suit up for Week 1.

On that point, Reich said (via The Athletic’s Joe Person) that he is unsure if Burns is willing to start the campaign without a deal in hand. Especially if he misses time to try and leverage an extension, the loss of Haynes early in the campaign will be acutely felt by the Panthers’ defense.

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