It feels like almost a daily occurrence that a Jamal Adams trade rumor resurfaces. The game-wrecking 2017 top 10 picks by the New York Jets have officially requested a trade from the organization as of yesterday, per multiple sources. At this particular moment in time, the Jets have not acted to push trade with Adams. Back in February when addressing a possible long term deal, GM Joe Douglas was quoted saying, “Jamal is an unbelievable player. We’re excited about Jamal. The plan is for Jamal to be a Jet for life.” While this reality might not exactly pan out as the Jets and Douglas had initially hoped, a trade seems more likely now than ever.
According to a tweet by Adam Shefter, Adams would welcome trade from the following seven teams: Ravens, Cowboys, Texans, Chiefs, Eagles, 49ers, and Seahawks. Adams later expressed interest in Tampa Bay, which would reunite him with former Jets head coach Todd Bowles. Six out of these eight teams made the playoffs, with the Chiefs and 49ers making the super bowl, it is clear that Adams prefers to go to a contender. So how likely is a trade to actually happen? And which team is most likely to acquire him?
Most likely: Ravens, Cowboys, Eagles, Seahawks.
These teams would all certainly be interesting destinations for Adams. But it is not as simple as just saying, “He’s a good player, they’re a good team let’s make it happen.” Let’s look at each team’s safety situation:
The Ravens gave Earl Thomas a four year $55 million deal in March of 2019, making him the third highest-paid safety in football, just behind Redskins’ Landon Collins and Chiefs’ Tyrann Mathieu, both of whom making $14 million a year. Thomas, now 31, is still one of the elite safeties in the game, not to mention a cornerstone of the Legion of Boom in Seattle, and adding Adams would undoubtedly create the most dominant safety duo in the NFL.
The Cowboys are probably the most likely destination for Adams. Logically speaking, he fits a desperate need, and after the departure of their best member of the secondary, Byron Jones, the Cowboys are yearning for a playmaker on the back end of the defense. The one glaring issue here would obviously be the financial aspect. With Ezekiel Elliott and Jaylon Smith, both inking star contracts and QB Dak Prescott asking for record money, Jerry Jones and the Cowboys could be in a tough spot. If they somehow could get a deal done, this would fill a huge hole for Dallas.
The Eagles are another team desperate for secondary help. With the departure of veteran safety Malcolm Jenkins to the Saints this offseason, Adams could look to bolster their secondary as well. A surprising draft class that included taking Oklahoma QB Jalen Hurts in the second round after giving Carson Wentz a massive contract was questionable, so GM Howie Roseman could look to return to contention with the acquisition of the star safety if the price is right.
Seattle hasn’t had an elite defense since the Legion of Boom disbanded years ago. While the acquisition of premier pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney did help the interior defense, the back end is still a need for Pete Carroll and Seahawks. Russell Wilson is a top-five quarterback in the league, they bolstered the offensive line, drafted a young stud WR in D.K. Metcalf, and have young productive running backs with Chris Carson and Rashad Penny. Going after Adams, without giving up too much would shoot the Seahawks right up the rankings into contention in the NFC.
Least likely: Texans, Chiefs, 49ers.
Houston GM/Head Coach Bill O’Brien has certainly made some questionable moves. Most notably, trading superstar WR DeAndre Hopkins to Arizona for a broken down David Johnson, a second-round and future fourth-round pick. This was a shocking deal, to say the least, and after handing out another deal to Brandin Cooks to replace Hopkins, it is unlikely they go after Adams, who’s asking price may be too high for the Texans.
The reigning super bowl champions have zero holes. You could argue cornerback and some other nit-picky positions, but let’s be honest, the Chiefs have no glaring needs, and giving up what would be a haul for Adams wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense. Tyrann Mathieu was excellent down the stretch for the Chiefs and has established himself as the leader of that defense. With Mahomes due for a record-breaking extension, another huge expense doesn’t seem probable. Unless they could get him for a steal and completely fleece the Jets, it doesn’t look likely for him to play in Arrowhead any time soon.
The 49ers are in a similar situation. Making it to the super bowl in Jimmy Garoppolo’s first, fully healthy season with the team is a sign of a bright future for the Niners. Despite losing DeForest Buckner to the Colts, their defense is still anchored by young stars like Fred Warner, Arik Armstead, and breakout DROY Nick Bosa. John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan have built this roster through the draft, with few a free agent acquisitions here and there, and have found gems at almost every position. That process has proven successful, and following that method is still the most responsible thing to do moving forward.
Adams is claiming to want $20 million a year. Yikes. Any team willing to pay that amount of money for a safety better be willing and able to win right now. Whether a deal gets done or not, Adams is owed $3.5 million this season and then $9.9 million in 2021, when/if the Jets pick up his fifth-year option. No one except Christian McCaffery has been extended from the 2017 draft class, which included Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes. Will he be traded? Will the Jets sign him long term? Will he hold out? All remains to be seen.