(The Sports Xchange) - Reaction poured in after the Washington Redskins landed All-Pro linebacker Josh Norman, who said on Friday night he wanted to win “the granddaddy of them all”.
The free agent was signed by the Redskins on Friday to a deal for five years and $75 million, with a reported $50 million guaranteed.
After the Carolina Panthers surprisingly rescinded his franchise tag on Wednesday, the 28-year-old Norman visited the Redskins on Friday to close out the deal.
He was flown by private jet to Washington by the Redskins and was accompanied by his mother and several family members.
Norman’s average salary per season will be $15 million, eclipsing Patrick Peterson’s contract with the Arizona Cardinals ($14.01 million annually) to make Norman the highest-paid cornerback in the NFL, according to ESPN.
“I‘m looking forward to getting back to the playoffs here,” Norman said Friday in an interview with the team’s “Redskins Nation” show on CSN Mid-Atlantic.
”You guys went last year, I‘m looking forward to going even deeper into the playoffs and then the Super Bowl. That’s our motto ... that’s the ultimate goal.
“I want to win the granddaddy of them all. I want to win the Super Bowl. And I‘m not going to stop until I get back there. Because I know I will one day and then make the wrong a right.”
Norman, entering his fifth season in the NFL, finished 2015 with a career-best four interceptions and was named to the Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro. He also had 56 tackles, 16 passes defensed, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries while gaining acclaim as one of the league’s best cornerbacks.
In his first four seasons with the Panthers, Norman started 38 of 53 regular-season games and accumulated seven interceptions, 172 tackles, four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and 35 passes defensed.
The addition of Norman gives the Redskins an aggressive cornerback to go up against the likes of New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant twice a year.
Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins, who received the franchise tag from the team for 2016, welcomed Norman via Twitter.
“Well, practice just got even more challenging! Welcome aboard @J_No24! #HTTR,” Cousins tweeted.
Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall tweeted: “Let me be the first to say Welcome to the Family @J_No24. Can’t wait to watch @J_No24 @Salute_me17.”
Norman did not expect to play for any team except the Panthers in 2016 whether it was with the franchise tag or a long-term deal.
“It came out of nowhere. It really did,” Norman told “Redskins Nation” on Friday night. “I got sideswiped. I didn’t see it coming.”
Editing by Mark Lamport-Stokes