NFL Top 100: Josh Norman ranked No. 59 overall on comprehensive list
The NFL Top 100 continued once again on Monday night. A week after seeing a couple of members of their team ranked, the Washington Redskins saw Josh Norman crack the top 60.
The Washington Redskins have seen a number of players ranked in the NFL Top 100 for 2017. A week after seeing Kirk Cousins and Jordan Reed make it in the top 70, the Redskins saw another player make it. This time around, cornerback Josh Norman made it in at No. 59. The ranking is much lower than Norman’s rank last year, but it is probably a bit lower than Norman should have been placed.
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In 2016, Norman came in at No. 11 on the NFL’s list, and was the No. 1 cornerback overall. He was coming off a season that saw him make the Super Bowl as a member of the Carolina Panthers. Norman had been a big time playmaker for the team, posting four picks, three forced fumbles, and two defensive touchdowns. He was a real game changer for the Panthers, and was one of the driving forces behind their Super Bowl run and their 15-1 regular season record.
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In the offseason, Norman was unceremoniously released by the Panthers after the team rescinded the franchise tag from him. He ended up signing with the Redskins to fill the void that the team had at the No. 1 cornerback position for multiple seasons. In his first season, he did not disappoint.
Norman was one of the only consistent quality players on the team’s defense. Settling in as the top cornerback, Norman ended up covering the opponent’s top receivers in each of the final 14 games of the season. At the beginning of the year, Norman was isolated on one side of the field. That was the result of a poorly run scheme by the now departed Joe Barry, but the adjustment allowed Norman to have success.
In all, Norman totaled three picks, forced two fumbles, and had a career high 67 tackles. He was not quite as much of a game changer, as opposing quarterbacks were more able to avoid him due to the weaknesses the Skins had at other defensive positions. Still, he proved to be an upper echelon top corner and definitely deserves to be on the NFL Top 100 list.
That said, No. 59 just seems a bit too low for Norman. He is top five NFL cornerback who had a second straight highly productive season. I had imagined that his range would be more in the No. 20 to No. 30 rank, given the traditional value of top notch corners on these lists in the past, but that obviously did not happen.
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At the end of the day, all that this will do is motivate Norman to succeed even more. He already plays with a chip on his shoulder, so this will continue to fuel his fire. Expect Norman to have another quality season in his second season with the Redskins.