I've got nothing to prove: Norman
Eels five-eighth Corey Norman says he's got nothing to prove to the Broncos when he meets his former club for the first time on Friday night.
Norman, 22, had a nightmare finish to his time with the Broncos where he was forced to play out of position at fullback before being dumped to the Intrust Super Cup late in the season.
But the one-time heir to Darren Lockyer's throne says that he's put his former life as a Bronco well behind him.
"Got nothing to prove to them. I've just got to play good footy for the Eels and that's it," Norman said on Tuesday.
"It'll be a good challenge, [but] I can't worry about that too much. I've just got to worry about the job for the team. I'm just treating it as another game. It's my old club, but I just got to go into it and take it as another game."
Upset with his lack of opportunities at Red Hill, the 22-year-old switched to Parramatta over the summer where he started the year as Brad Arthur's first-choice five-eighth.
And while not setting the world on fire – he was solid in last week's 32-16 thumping of Penrith – there's no doubting he returns to Brisbane a far happier player.
Teammate Kenny Edwards says that Norman's blossoming combination with erratic halfback Chris Sandow has given life to a team that barely had a heartbeat last season.
"If they're not the funniest halves combination in league, I don't who is. They're both little brats. Man, I hate being anywhere near them. Around training, they bag us for everything we do," Edwards said.
"So yeah, it's good to have that in the team. It brings a bit of camaraderie, a bit of jokes around the team, especially when the mood's dull. [We] turned up this morning pretty early and all the boys weren't too keen to get started and those two were just chirpy, turning the music on, and yelling at everyone. It's good to have that around the club, especially around the boys."
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Last week's win over Penrith lifted the Eels to a 2-2 record to start the year, which is about two more wins than many experts had pencilled them in for. Edwards said their solid opening month of football has breathed some belief into a squad that lacked it under former coach Ricky Stuart.
"I was here last year and there was a bit missing. I think [it's] just the belief that we're building as a group," he said.
"It's good for us, we're a tight-knit group of boys and moving forward, I think it's good for our culture. We're starting to build a culture here and our coach, he's installed hard work together. It's good starting to get that belief in the group."
While Ben Barba looms as the obvious threat on Friday night, Edwards identified Brisbane's dangerous offloaders as their biggest roadblock in breaking a 17 game losing streak away from home.
Ironically, Parramatta last road win was against the Broncos back in Round 21, 2012 – under then-interim coach Brad Arthur.
"It's hard to single anyone out. Obviously Ben Barba at the back, he'll be one to watch," Edwards said. "But they've got strike weapons all over the field. Sammy Thaiday in the forwards, Corey Parker, they can all offload. And they play second phase footy pretty well. We'll have to be on our game and turn up, but we can't wait for another challenge."