Originally from Alexandria, Virginia, Burks attended Vanderbilt University where he flexed his athletic versatility making starts at several different positions along the Commodores defense. As a safety, hybrid safety/linebacker and inside linebacker, Burks totaled 228 tackles, 4.5 sacks, five interceptions, 15.5 tackles for loss, 21 passes defensed and two fumble recoveries.
In his senior year, Burks ranked No. 15 in the SEC in total tackles. He concluded his collegiate career with 40 starts in 45 appearances and in 2017 was ranked as the team's leader in several defensive statistical categories including total tackles, tackles for loss and interceptions.
It wasn't just on the field where the linebacker excelled, Burks also focused his academic and philanthropic talents throughout his college community.
While earning his undergraduate degree in Human and Organizational Development in the Fall of 2017, Burks served as the president of Vanderbilt's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Burks also co-founded a campus group named REVAMP, which stood for Revitalizing and Empowering Vanderbilt's African-American Male Population. The group worked towards creating a safe and encouraging space for Black men on campus in order to uplift their community at large. His community service helped groups such as Soles4Souls, a global nonprofit that fights poverty through the distribution of shoes.
His peers recognized his commitment to giving back, and voted Burks as the "Mr. Commodore" Award recipient in May 2017 – an award given to a student who best represents their sport, Vanderbilt student-athletes and the campus community.
Burks put up impressive numbers during his pre-draft process in 2018, raking among the top performers at his position at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Vertical Jump: 39.5 inch
40-yard Dash: 4.59 seconds
Bench Press: 18 reps
Three-cone Drill: 6.82 seconds
The linebacker commanded the attention of Green Bay. The Packers traded a fourth- and a fifth-round pick to move up and select Burks with the 88th overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.
The strong and versatile athlete is just as serious about community service as he is about football. Burks is currently involved with a number of organizations that work towards his personal causes and beliefs, including House of Hope, Sherman Phoenix and the South County Football Alumni Association.
House of Hope works to support women and children out of homelessness in the greater Green Bay Area by providing everyday resources and the opportunity to learn new skills. Burks has also worked with the Packers in order to donate over $75,000 to Sherman Phoenix, a group that supports entrepreneurship and community wealth in Sherman Park Milwaukee, an area that has experienced a long history of systematic oppression and racial unrest. Alongside his high school teammates and friends, Burks founded the South County Football Alumni Association to give back to the program where he started his football career.
Burks' best performances with the Packers came on special teams.
The linebacker played a total of 59 games in Green Bay with six starts in four seasons while also appearing in four playoff contests. Burks notched a total of 33 tackles on special teams in his career, the most on the team from 2018-2021.
Last season, Burks finished second on the Packers with the most special teams tackles with 10 during the regular season.