A few days removed from a Week 14 matchup against his former team, Jamal Adams peeled the curtain back a bit to his time with the Jets. He spoke to reporters on Friday and explained that he has no regrets about requesting a trade over the summer and the public nature of his departure.
Adams shared how he battled depression during his final season with the Jets. He explained that a change of scenery was mandatory if he was going to get himself out of that hole mentally. Adams and his family were past the point of no return.
New York granted his request and traded him to Seattle for two first-round picks, and Adams has been effusive in his praise of the Seahawks organization since his arrival in July.
“I’m just happy to be here. I’m not really focused on the past,” Adams said. “It did go down the way it went down, but I have nothing but love for the Jets organization.”
Adams’ first season in Seattle hasn’t been without its hurdles, though. The star safety missed a month due to a groin injury and has since battled through an ongoing shoulder ailment. He said he’s grown as a player and as a man through what he called his first real instance of battling the injury bug in his career.
But Adams’ shoulder is getting closer to full strength (although he admitted it won’t be fully 100% until the offseason), and things are trending in the right direction for both the safety and Seattle’s defense as a whole. He’s .5 sack shy of Adrian Wilson’s NFL record for sacks by a defensive back in a single season (Wilson had 8.0 in 2005, Adams is at 7.5 this season), and he’s getting a firmer grasp of Seattle’s defensive scheme on a weekly basis.
He can feel himself nearing mastery of Pete Carroll’s defense. Adams shared he’s recognizing things quicker and seeing things more clearly.
“It’s gonna get scary, it’s gonna get scary,” Adams said, presumably speaking to his potential.
Adams added that this weekend’s game against the Jets will understandably carry extra meaning for him. He hinted that the rivalry will be good-natured at the core given the absence of any bad blood on his side of things.
“They’re going to be talking noise. I’m going to be talking noise. It’s going to be a fun battle. … It’s going to be exciting,” Adams said. “I finally get to get after Sam (Darnold) a little bit. He’s one of my guys. I have a lot of respect for Sam. Just to face him and he doesn’t have a red jersey on because I’m used to that. It’s going to be fun.”
There will be handshakes and hugs pre-game and post between Adams and his former teammates and coaches. Both parties can probably acknowledge that the trade was for the best. And with that understanding, there’s no reason to make any more of this weekend’s matchup than what it is.
“It’s bigger than ball,” Adams said. “It’s about the relationships that you build while you’re playing this game. That’s what makes this game really beautiful.”
And let’s face it, the Jets are 0-12 with the Seahawks sitting at 8-4 and likely headed to the playoffs. There’s not much more Adams would need to say, anyway.