Born: August 27, 1967
Town: East Orange
Robert Barry Burnett was born August 27, 1967 in East Orange. The family moved to Long Island in the 1970s; Rob grew up in Brookhaven, and attended Newfield High. He was an outstanding linebacker for the Wolverines, and by his junior year recruiters from major college football programs were starting to contact him. He accepted a scholarship from Syracuse in 1986 and was a starter for the Orangemen all four years. In his sophomore year, Syracuse had an outside shot at a national title, but tied Auburn in the Sugar Bowl to finish 11–0–1. As a senior defensive tackle in 1989, Rob was a finalist for the Lombardi Award. He finished his college career with 146 tackles and 18 sacks.
Rob was picked by the Cleveland Browns in the 5th round of the 1990 NFL Draft. He was 6/4” and 270 pounds, with good quickness. The Browns moved him to defensive end. The Browns struggled to play .500 ball early in Rob’s career, but in 1994 the team went 11–5 and he was named to the Pro Bowl along with teammates Pepper Johnson, Eric Turner, and Michael Dean Perry. Cleveland had a superb run defense, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the Steelers in the playoffs. The following season, owner Art Modell shocked Cleveland fans by announcing he planned to move the team to Baltimore. In 1996, they became the Baltimore Ravens.
The Ravens developed into the top defensive team in football. In 2000, they beat the Giants in Super Bowl XXXV. That season he led the team with 10.5 sacks and 5 fumble recoveries. He also intercepted the only pass of his career. Rob played his final year for the Ravens in 2001 and then signed with the Miami Dolphins. He was a backup lineman for two seasons before retiring.
Rob finished his career with 73 sacks and more than 500 tackles. From 1992 to 2001, he started every game he played in. After retiring, he got into broadcasting. In 2006, Rob joined the Ravens’ radio broadcast team. In 2000, he moved back to New Jersy and started a successful real estate investment company in Franklin Lakes.