Jamal Adams showed off some dance moves to the music as the soundtrack to warm-ups Friday inside the Jets’ field house. The second-year safety had good reason to be in good spirits after having been named the winner of the Curtis Martin Award as team MVP.
But beyond the announcement of some in-house awards and receiver Quincy Enunwa’s contract extension, there wasn’t much for the Jets to be happy about.
This was the last full-fledged practice in another lost season and possibly the last full one presided over by coach Todd Bowles.
The Jets will need to win at New England on Sunday just to get to 5-11 for the third straight season. Bowles has no playoff tickets to show for his four years in charge. There has been much speculation that this will be it for him here.
CEO Christopher Johnson, who had wanted to see progress this season, will be the one to decide one way or another.
Bowles, though, wasn’t playing defense for himself after practice. Asked to assess his job performance this season, he laid it out in one sentence filled with accountability:
“The record says it all.”
The Jets have dropped five games by seven or fewer points. “We haven’t scored enough points, and we didn’t make the plays at the end,” Bowles said.
Several players have been steadfast in their support of Bowles as the losses have mounted, most notably Adams.
“We’ll have relationships long after football,” Bowles said. “That’s really what you look at for the future. But we’re here to win ballgames. Understandably so. I’ve got to do my job. They’ve got to do their job.”
Bowles’ job was going to be hard this season, as the Jets were breaking in a rookie quarterback. At least Sam Darnold showed substantial progress in the past three games after coming back from a foot injury, throwing for six touchdowns with only one interception.
“Mentally he made progress every week, and that’s the biggest thing,” Bowles said. “His physical skills are taking care of themselves. He just has to keep maturing, obviously. He’s got to keep seeing plays like everybody else that comes into the league at every position . . . His work ethic is outstanding.”
Adams, who was last year’s first-round pick, was another player who took a large step forward. He said being voted the Jets’ MVP by his teammates “means a lot.”
So does the fact that he’s bound for his first Pro Bowl.
“I think I’m starting to get the respect that I deserve,” Adams said. “I don’t put a ceiling on myself. I always want to chase bigger and better things.”
Such as a winning season and a playoff berth.
“Right now, obviously we’re going through a storm,” Adams said, “but the sun will shine sooner or later.”
And the winners are . . .
The other team award winners: Enunwa (Ed Block Courage Award); center/ guard Jonotthan Harrison (Marty Lyons Award, community service); tight end Chris Herndon (Bill Hampton Award, rookie who acts like a pro); defensive lineman Steve McLendon (Dennis Byrd Award, most inspirational), and linebacker Avery Williamson (Kyle Clifton “Good Guy” Award) . . .. . . Enunwa (ankle) and receiver Jermaine Kearse (Achilles) are out for Sunday’s finale against the Patriots, as are cornerback Morris Claiborne (shoulder, ankle) and linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis (shoulder). Linebacker Jordan Jenkins (ankle) is questionable. Kicker Jason Myers (hip) practiced fully.