Jamal Adams pushed his way out of the Jets’ organization over the summer, and they haven’t won a game since. The All-Pro safety will do everything he can to make sure they don’t get their first one against him.
Not that that should be too difficult. The Jets are 0-12, down one starting receiver and possibly two, and coming off a crushing loss that led to defensive coordinator Gregg Williams’ firing.
Then add the Jamal Adams’ factor.
The Jets are in Seattle on Sunday to face the 8-4 Seahawks. It’s Adams’ first game against his old team, the one he couldn’t wait to leave. Adams will be fired up to wreck the day for Adam Gase and the Jets.
"I would be lying if I said I’m not excited," Adams said. "Of course. But it’s an even-keeled mindset. I’m not trying to make this about me. I’m not trying to hype myself up. I’m not trying to go out there and prove I can make this play or that."
Adams felt the Jets didn’t value him because they didn’t offer him a contract extension. Adams still had two years left on his rookie deal.
He did everything he could to get out of Florham Park. In the days before he was traded to Seattle, Adams was critical of owner Woody Johnson and Gase. Adams continued to pile on, saying recently the Jets "do not want to win" and that he fought depression last season.
Adams is an emotional player and he gets up for every game. But there are certain ones that mean more to him.
Two memorable ones from last year was when the Jets played Dallas, where Adams is from, and when they faced the Giants, his father George’s old team. Adams made big plays to secure both games. You can bet Adams is coming after Sam Darnold.
Adams is blitzing more than he did last year when he had 6.5 sacks with the Jets. He has a career-high 7.5 in eight games this year. Adams needs just one to establish a new NFL single-season record for defensive backs. Arizona safety Adrian Wilson had eight sacks in 2005.
"That has been on my mind, breaking the record," Adams said. "It doesn’t matter what team is out there. That is my former team. Will it be sweet? Of course. At the end of the day I’m going out there to continue to do my job and continue to make plays for the team and ultimately come out victorious."
Later, Adams joked, "I finally get to get after Sam a little bit, one of my guys."
Adams still has several friends with the Jets. Fellow safety Marcus Maye, who was taken 33 picks after Adams in the 2017 draft, speaks to his former teammate all the time. Maye said they speak after games and throughout the week. Maye was asked about how badly Adams wants to win this game.
"I’m pretty sure we all want it just as bad as he does," Maye said. "It’s coming from both sides."
The Jets were devastated last week. They were seconds away from their first win of 2020, but they lost 31-28 to the Raiders after Williams coordinator called an all-out blitz in the final seconds. Derek Carr connected with Henry Ruggs for a 46-yard touchdown with five seconds to go.
Everyone inside the Jets’ locker room was crushed. Maye voiced his displeasure about Williams’ play call repeatedly after the game. Gase fired Williams on Monday and named Frank Bush interim defensive coordinator.
Bush will call the defensive plays on Sunday for the first time in 10 years and will try to devise something to slow down Russell Wilson, DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. Seattle has the No. 4 scoring offense in the NFL, averaging 29.4 points per game.
The Raiders loss lingered for Gase for days. But the players said they were able to turn the page by Monday and start their preparation for the Seahawks.
"Our guys have bounced back well," Darnold said.
The Seahawks are a very forgiving defense, but the Jets will be short playmakers.
Denzel Mims won’t play because he left the NFL COVID-19 protocol when he traveled home to Texas for a family emergency. Jamison Crowder, who had two touchdown catches last week, didn’t practice Friday because of a calf injury and is questionable.
Odds are very good that Adams will get his wish — a win and the defensive back sack record, both against the Jets.
Notes & quotes: RG Greg Van Roten was placed on Injured Reserve with a foot injury. The Long Beach resident and former Chaminade star’s first season as a Jet is over. He played 12 games and didn’t miss a snap until he suffered the injury last week . . . S Ashtyn Davis (foot) and S Bennett Jackson (hamstring) were put on IR. CB Bless Austin and TE Trevon Wesco were activated ... WR Lawrence Cager and S Saquan Hampton were signed to the active roster. LB Noah Dawkins and WR Jaleel Scott were elevated to the roster from the practice squad.