December 6, 2022

By The Numbers | A Closer Look At Burnham’s Career

BC Lions vs. Edmonton Elks - 2022 CFL regular season - Week 1

He always had the knack for coming down with the big catch in highlight-reel fashion. He put up some insane numbers. His smile and intensity were equally infectious. He was the ultimate teammate always willing to go to battle for anyone strapping on the pads with him.

Those are just a few of the qualities of Bryan Burnham the player and person. Number 16 officially announced his retirement from pro football on Tuesday, ending a career that took a few years to truly take off. Next stop? Why not Hamilton and the Canadian Football Hall of Fame? Before we officially launch that campaign, we will take a close look at some of the more impressive numbers of Bryan Burnham’s Lions career that spanned eight seasons from 2014-22.

Known for his highlight-reel moments and undeniable dedication, we take a closer look at some of the key numbers of Bryan Burnham's career.

Burnham Career By The Numbers

105– total games played for the playmaker after originally catching the attention of team brass at a Seattle free agent camp in May 2014. Burnham hit the century mark in a 41-40 win at Calgary on August 13, a game in which he also caught a touchdown pass and a clutch 33-yard reception on third down to keep a fourth-quarter drive going in the massive comeback win. Only Burnham could come up big like that in game number 100.

105/105– Burnham amazingly caught at least one reception in all 105 of his regular season games played. That consecutive-games streak…

7,212– Burnham’s career receiving yards total puts him fourth on the all-time franchise list, trailing only Geroy Simon, Jim Young and his former teammate Manny Arceneaux. Burnham passed Swervyn’ Mervyn Fernandez in yards in a victory over Edmonton on August 6 of this past season.

476– career receptions total also places him fourth amongst all-time Lions, trailing the game three players above.

42- touchdown receptions are good for seventh all-time in Lions history, behind the three above plus Fernandez, Mike Trevathan and Willie Fleming.

7- the total number of quarterbacks Burnham hauled in touchdowns from in his career. The first came from Kevin Glenn on September 19, 2014 in a home loss to the Toronto Argonauts. The last helped put away this year’s Western Semi-Final against Calgary on a dart from Nathan Rourke. Overall, the breakdown of quarterbacks and the number of touchdown receptions from each are as follows, in order of most to least:

Jonathon Jennings (13)
Michael Reilly (12)
Travis Lulay (8)
Nathan Rourke (6)
1 each from Kevin Glenn (2014), Danny O’Brien (2019) and Brandon Bridge (2019)

Burnham also caught two majors in six career playoff games, this year from Rourke as mentioned above and a 2016 major from Jennings in the Western Semi-Final win over Winnipeg. Burnham’s full playoff numbers are as follows: six games played, six receptions, 243 yards and two touchdowns.

4- consecutive seasons of 1,000-plus yards, coming from 2016-19. If you want to take it a step further, Burnham still managed to record 965 yards in a 2021 season that was limited to 14 games. And oh yeah, he still managed to play in every game that year despite breaking a hand in Hamilton in game number 12. 2019 was the most productive of Burnham’s career with 1,492 yards and 11 touchdowns while earning the team nomination for CFL Most Outstanding Player.

67- In that 2021 campaign, Burnham led the CFL with 67 catches. He became the first Lion to accomplish that feat since Simon back in 2006.

9- the number of CFL venues Burnham caught at least one touchdown reception in; the only current one being Edmonton’s Commonwealth Stadium. The list does include Toronto’s Rogers Centre where he hauled in a TD pass in the Lions’ last-ever visit there in October 2015.

In closing, Burnham will go down as one of the all-time great players and people to suit up in Lions orange and black. The organization and fans were better off having the chance to watch and cheer him on. These crazy numbers back all of that up. Best of luck in your next chapter, Bryan!

Matt Baker: