Redskins cornerback Josh Norman believes his highly anticipated rematch with the Giants "can't get here fast enough," as he looks to help Washington get into the win column.
Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman is only worried about getting victories, not who he will be lining up against each week.
That remains unchanged as he faces a New York Giants wide receiving corps that features Odell Beckham Jr., a player he had a heated – and sometimes over the top – battle with in a late 2015 season matchup when Norman was still with the Carolina Panthers.
"I think (the media) amped that game up that week going into it," Norman said on Wednesday of last year's game. "I think we were 15-and-0 last year when I was with Carolina – well, going into it trying to be 15-and-0 – that was a team that was trying to get past. Leading up a good player on defense and a good player on offense going against each other it was…I don't know. Media was frenzy that week, both of us were going in at it, top of our profession. What you see is what you got. I didn't think it was going to be to that point, but it did."
The way they tangled on the field isn't commonplace in the NFL these days, as Beckham Jr. was flagged three times for personal foul calls while Norman was penalized twice.
One of the Beckham Jr.'s biggest transgressions was a late strike to Norman's helmet. He would be suspended for the Giants' Week 16 game against the Minnesota Vikings.
The spotlight may be back on the pair – especially if the Redskins' game plan is to have Norman travel with Beckham Jr. this week – but the Coastal Carolina product wants to leave last December's game in his past.
"That was last year and I think that things that happened in the past stay in the past, whether they're here or not," Norman said. "I'm sure he didn't want it to happen just like everybody else didn't, but it did. Our feelings about it really doesn't matter, to be honest with you. It's another week, it's a new opponent, fresh game plan going out there trying to attack it the best we possibly can. I don't really look too much into that."
Norman's only focus right now, though, is getting the Redskins back in the right direction after losing the first two games of the season.
Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman has been voted the 11th best player on the NFL's "Top 100 Players of 2016" list.
"[I] focus on winning. I think nothing more, nothing less," Norman said. "If you don't win the game, you fall short. No matter who you're covering, [or] how many yards you have in a game, if you don't come out with a 'W', it's really all for nothing. [We'll] try and get out here and get a win. Get our season started on the right foot. I think that's the main thing of focus that we need to, you know, concentrate on, to be honest with you."
While a report surfaced Wednesday morning that Norman will cover Beckham Jr. everywhere the two-time Pro Bowler goes outside of the slot, the cornerback and Redskins head coach Jay Gruden both did not tip their hand at what's going to happen, at least yet.
But if Washington's coaching staff tells Norman to cover Beckham Jr., he doesn't "shy away from anybody."
"Oh my gosh, you go on Sunday, reeks and oozes with confidence. I don't bow down to nobody or their thoughts of me," Norman said. "I try to make my own and when I do, I impose my will. I try to do that each and every time I step on the football field, no matter who we're facing. So at the end of the day, you give me your best shot and I'll take it."
So far this season, the Giants are 2-0 behind a revamped defense and a passing attack that now goes three deep with rookie Sterling Shephard and the returning Victor Cruz.
The Redskins have also struggled at MetLife Stadium over the years, as they've lost four in a row against the Giants at their home and have marked off just win in the stadium since it opened in 2010.
Norman wants to make sure the receiving trio is silenced on the field and the Redskins find a way to get their first victory of the year on Sunday.
"I am looking forward to playing the New York Giants, man," Norman said. "I think a lot has been said from this week all the way up since last time we played each other so I'm sure they're going to be ready just as much as we are. Shoot, seems Sunday can't get here fast enough."