Will Super Bowl 50 reveal a Broncos advantage in the form of a Josh Norman hand motion?
For Super Bowl 50, it seems as though Josh Norman has been everywhere in the media week with the Carolina Panthers. Whether he was wearing luchador masks at opening night, berating Deion Sanders for his support of Odell Beckham, or not really telling the NFL Today folks who won his ‘fight’ with Cam Newton in the preseason.
Yet one article just kind of appeared out of the ether on CBS Sports. It was written by Pete Prisco, who was already on my naughty list for inexplicably writing an article about the 1996 Jacksonville Jaguars last week. Well Mr. Prisco is on my bad side again because he decided to blow the lid on Mr. Norman.
Prisco noticed that Norman sets up differently for a play depending on whether the Panthers call a zone defense or a man to man look. On zone plays, Prisco noted that Norman was more relaxed in pose and his hands would be relaxed as well. In man plays, Norman would keep his hands up and busy so that he could bump at the line of scrimmage.
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Prisco played off this film study as if it was a big coup. It certainly was well researched. Yet no one seemed particularly shocked by it. Prisco asked former Dolphins corner Sam Madison about it and got him to admit it was weird, but that was about it. Prisco seemed to believe that the Broncos could somehow use this to their advantage.
The reason for this was a series of plays where Norman got beat in man coverage. If Julio Jones can do it, why not Demaryius Thomas? Here’s where the problem comes in. That’s a lot of changing on the fly to try to take advantage of the team’s best cornerback. Doesn’t it make more sense to attack Robert McClain rather than hope that Norman is in man coverage? Note that Norman is not normally in man.
The other thing is that now Norman can work to fix it. This means that the Broncos may get nothing from this discovery at all. Prisco’s article is a good read, I just didn’t like the topic.
Super Bowl 50 is just around the corner and will be here before we know it.