Josh Norman: Dez Bryant has 'a lot left in the tank'

Dez Bryant has become a punching bag this offseason. The Dallas Cowboys receiver is being criticized from every angle due to his on-field play slipping and expensive contract.

One of his biggest competitors, however, chose a different path when asked about the highly paid receiver.

"He has a lot left in the tank. It's what he gets out of it, that's the thing," Redskins corner Josh Norman said on Fox Sports 1 Thursday, via the Dallas Morning News. "I mean, he can be whatever he wants to be.

"I'm not here to down the man, I'm not gonna down him. He plays the game at the highest level. I think for him, it's all between here [points to head]. Once he figures that out and once he feels that 'When I step on the field I'm going to dominate whether it's Josh Norman or a rookie coming into the league [lined up against me].' ... Everybody's got to figure that out. I'm still figuring it out.

"It's about want-to."

Consider Norman's words a kind gesture toward a foe whose talents have diminished, lessening the heat of their rivalry.

Norman has statistically shut down Dez over the course of two seasons in Washington. Bryant earned nine catches for 100 yards and one TD in two tilts versus the Redskins in 2017 -- much of that production, including the score, came against corners not named Norman.

Bryant has been taken to task for losing a step the past two seasons but not adjusting his game appropriately.

NFL Network's Jane Slater previously reported that Bryant will train with personal wide receiver coach David Robinson this offseason to improve his route running. It's the type of move Norman says every player must make in the offseason.

"I think that he has been taking measures and steps to get his game better," he said. "Everybody's been taking measures and steps to get his game better. I've heard he going to be working out with a new coach. ... So at the end of the day, that's getting yourself prepared for the season that's coming ahead. Getting yourself better. You didn't do something last year that obviously gave you this output, so you're doing something different this year to give you a better one..."

Bryant's situation in Dallas remains a quagmire, exacerbated by his exorbitant salary and pedestrian play. While he's likely to remain a Cowboy in 2018, Bryant's play must improve and evolve as he ages. Otherwise, he won't continue to command a sizable salary, and Dallas will remain sitting on a couch watching January football.

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