There is no player that inspires more divisive conversation than Josh Norman.
Norman is a bit of an enigma. Sometimes he looks like a shut down corner capable of matching up one on one against any receiver in the league. Other times, his aggressive nature causes him to be on the wrong side of a players gamble.
One thing is certain, Josh Norman doesn't back down from anyone.
At the Panthers goal line, Norman did everything he could to slow down Bills running back Anthony Dixon until help arrived. Norman didn't have time to square up and go for Dixon's legs, so he held on, riding Dixon while hoping for safety or linebacker help.
That is what I love about Josh. Whether you are a 6'4 receiver or a 240 pound running back, he is going to challenge you... and tell you about it in the process.
I am a sucker for a good trash talker.
Norman is known for his colorful banter on the field. It doesn't take much to get him fired up. Much like Steve Smith, it is part of what makes him great, and yet also his weakness. It took Smith several years to learn to control it, it may take the same amount of time with Norman. Norman's intensity at times has also gotten the better of him, taking him mentally out of the game.
But that is the same intensity that allows him to make great plays, like his interception over Bills WR Marcus Easley.
Make no mistake, Josh Norman's interception was no accident. I spoke with Josh after the game about it.
"The first play, they ran that post with number 19, I was a little too thick on him earlier and I couldn't time my jump" Norman said. "Second time around, I saw him and I was like yeah, I already know what you are running. I just wanted to make sure I was in position, over top, in the lead."
Norman then plucked the ball out of the air, another in a long line of preseason interceptions. The key thing here is that he learned from a previous mistake, and then used that experience to his advantage.
Every year I try to get better at something, every year I try to grow in the knowledge of the game - Josh Norman
During his Friday night press conference, head coach Ron Rivera singled out Josh Norman as someone that impressed him.
Once again, I agree with the coach. I am firmly planted on team Josh Norman... for better or worse.