And thus, we’ve arrived at the main issue here — at least how I perceive it. The issue isn’t that Osweiler was benched, it’s that he was benched on the eve of a Super Bowl run. This even though he probably deserved the chance to lead the team to the Super Bowl because he was actually the better quarterback last year, statistically speaking. The competitor in Osweiler, I’m guessing, looked at Manning and his noodle arm and knew that he was better at that point in time.
If Osweiler had won the Super Bowl for the Broncos, the questions that followed him to Houston this offseason wouldn’t exist, at least not in the same magnitude. Talking heads wouldn’t be talking about his inexperience, they’d be citing his Super Bowl run. Winning a ring in the NFL as a quarterback might be the only way to gain immunity from criticism.
Furthermore, if Osweiler had played and won the Super Bowl, he’d probably still be in Denver. When Osweiler departed, a report emerged that said he wasn’t interested in playing in Manning’s shadow. That wouldn’t have concerned Osweiler had he led the Broncos to a title with Manning sitting on the bench.
Obviously, Elway has no reason to regret the Broncos decision to play Manning. It didn’t cost them a ring and it provided Manning with the perfect sendoff. But it’s a little surprising to hear Elway say he was surprised by Osweiler’s reaction, which is why Osweiler’s response seemed to be also steeped in surprise.
Josh Norman takes on all comers. And he’s not just taking the field for the Washington Redskins, this new team, this season. He’s adding television to his curriculum vitae.
Per The MMQB’s Emily Kaplan, Norman will be a regular contributor on Fox’s NFL coverage. His one-year contract states he’ll have a minimum of 10 appearances this season. Most of the sessions will be done from his home in Virginia, although Norman will travel to the Fox studios during the Redskins’ Week 9 bye in the first week of November.
Eat your heart out, Brandon Marshall.
Norman watched Marshall earn two sports Emmy nominations with Showtime as an analyst on “Inside the NFL,” and the ever-competitive Redskins cornerback told friends he wanted to double Marshall’s nominations with four.
Oh, and Norman — one of the more outspoken and bold players in the NFL — agreed to do it without his coaches knowing about it … although they likely are aware of it by now.
“I haven’t told Coach [Jay] Gruden or [defensive coordinator Joe] Barry yet, but I’ll give them a nice shout out on TV,” Norman says. “It’s not at all going to be a distraction. If you keep your focus on you and not anybody else, you’re going to be fine. I’m going to be me on Sunday.”
The Redskins pounced on Norman, 28, who was named the Carolina Panthers’ franchise player this offseason — and then summarily made a free agent when the Panthers rescinded Norman’s tag, getting nothing in return for him.