Denver Broncos cornerback Chris Harris is keeping a list of players who have gotten the better of him over the years. The entirety of that list is unknown to anyone but Harris. Although, after getting the best of Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y Hilton in his team’s 34-20 win on Sunday, Harris told The Jim Rome Show on Tuesday that the two-time Pro Bowler was one of the guys on his list.
“He definitely had success before on me. They had beat us in the playoffs past, and they beat us last year, so he was one of the guys,” Harris said. “But I mean, as the season goes on, I’ll keep opening up a list of the guys I’m definitely excited to play against, and I’m going to have huge games with them.”
The Denver Broncos defense has committed several helmet-to-helmet hits through the first two games of the 2016 season, and in doing so, they’ve picked up a reputation of being “dirty.” Harris likes the chatter but believes his team is more tough and tenacious than dirty.
“We love that everybody has that fear in their head when they play us,” Harris said. “We want them to fear us. We like how the media, we like how everybody talks about it. We love that. We don’t want to be a dirty defense, but we definitely want to be a very physical defense that you know if we got a chance to make a nice hit on you we’re definitely going to hit you.”
Harris even believes this year’s Orange Crush defense can be better than the one that lead them to their Super Bowl 50 win last season.
“Going into the second year with Wade Phillips, he has a better understanding of us. We’ve actually added some good pieces that have definitely helped us, that have played well for us,” Harris said. “It’s just consistency, guys are being consistent. We keep everybody accountable as a defense of always having a championship standard, and I think that’s really what makes us play good every week.”
As one of the top corners in the NFL, Harris has certainly heard the heat Washington Redskins’ cornerback Josh Norman has received after he didn’t cover Pittsburgh Steelers Antonio Brown for the majority of their Week 1 matchup. Harris said Norman was just doing what his coaches asked of him and says there’s many attributes a true shutdown cornerback has.
“Making those huge key plays for your team in crucial moments I think, not giving up touchdowns, being able to shut down the other team’s top receiver,” Harris said, listing the attributes a true shutdown corner has. “I think Josh is having an excellent season. They’re having him just play the left. I mean some teams do that, if you look around.Sherm’s [Richard Sherman] done that his whole career. He’s considered one of the top three corner’s in the league, so I think he’s doing just what the coaches are asking to do, but you come play us, me and [Aqib] Talib, we play straight man. I don’t think anybody in the league is doing what we do.”
However, Harris did say he has played in similar schemes as Norman’s in Washington, which is to just play one side of the field for the majority of a game. “I’ve done that before, it’s ok,” Harris said. “I just feel like I’m not into the game as much. I love being able to play the right, left, play in the slot, being able to play everywhere on the field. I just feel like I have more ways to be able to effect the game.”
Asked if Sherman and Norman could truly be considered shutdown cornerbacks if they only stay in one place for the majority of their time on the field, Harris didn’t hesitate.
“Yeah man, in their way, man. Sherm is probably one of the greatest of all time, cover-three corner’s, being able to play that coverage that technique to perfection. So I’d still say those guys are shutdown,” Harris said. “They’re not giving up big plays, they’re not giving up touchdowns, so if you add that into the equation, they are.”