Should the Seahawks try to trade for Jets’ All-Pro safety Jamal Adams?
The Seahawks currently have three good options for their 2020 starting safety tandem in Quandre Diggs, Bradley McDougald and Marquise Blair, but would Seattle really say no to adding a 2019 First-Team All-Pro in Jamal Adams if the price is right? Likely not.
Adams, 24, has been in the media a lot this offseason as he seeks a new contract from his current team, the New York Jets. Adams, who is a two-time Pro Bowler, was the No. 6 pick in the 2017 draft after earning First-Team All-SEC and Second-Team All-American honors during his final season at LSU.
His name has been a source of trade rumors for quite some time, and on Thursday, Adams added a ton of fuel to those fires as he posted on his Instagram account “maybe it’s time to move on” in a post regarding contact negotiations. Later in the day, it was reported by ESPN’s Rich Cimini that Adams requested a trade.
The Jets-Jamal Adams situation continues to deteriorate. Adams informed the team he wants to be traded, a source tells ESPN. #Jets
— Rich Cimini (@RichCimini) June 18, 2020
If that’s the case, the Jets should have a good amount of suitors if they choose to listen, though it’s believed the Jets want to keep Adams in New York and according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Seahawks are one of just seven teams that Adams would “welcome a trade” to.
Here are the seven teams to which Jets’ Pro-Bowl safety Jamal Adams would welcome a trade, per source:
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) June 18, 2020
The list isn’t too surprising as six of those seven teams made the playoffs last season. The Jets have had losing seasons in each of Adams’ three years in the NFL.
Since entering the league, Adams has been “Mr. Do-It-All” for the Jets, recording 273 tackles, 12 sacks, six forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries, two interceptions and two defensive touchdowns during his three-year NFL career. In 2019, Adams had 6.5 sacks, 2.5 more than anyone on the Seahawks.
Adams has time and time again shown he is a top safety in the league, and now, he’s entering the fourth season of his rookie contract, which expires after the 2021 season since the Jets have picked up his fifth-year option. Additionally, the Jets could use a franchise tag on Adams for 2022 if he plays out his current contract. Adams has made it known he wants a new contract before the 2020 season begins.
According to OverTheCap, Adams is set to make $3.5 million guaranteed in 2020 and his cap hit is just over $7.1 million. He is set to make roughly $9.8 million in 2021.
The Seahawks liked what they saw when Diggs and McDougald played together, and Blair has a ton of upside as a second-round pick in 2019, but putting Adams at strong safety with Diggs playing free safety over the top could give Seattle one of the best safety tandems in the NFL. That would give the Seahawks by far their best safety tandem and arguably secondary since Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor were both healthy in early 2017. Plus, McDougald’s contract is up after 2020 and he could be a cut candidate to save the team some money.
The thought of pairing Diggs and Adams together is enticing, of course, but is a trade possible?
In terms of draft capital for 2020, the Seahawks have their original picks in every round except for the sixth round. The team could also acquire compensatory picks, though that won’t be known for quite some time. But if the Seahawks were willing to part with draft picks, they’re in a position where that’s possible.
The main issue would be Adams’ contract. As noted, he’s scheduled to make just upwards of $7 million next year, and an ESPN story says that he wants to be the highest-paid safety in the NFL. Currently, that honor goes to Eddie Jackson of the Chicago Bears, who makes $14.6 million.
Currently, the Seahawks have around $14 million in cap space per OverTheCap, so trading for Adams and immediately signing him to an extension would be unlikely unless the contract was either more backloaded, or if the extension didn’t kick in until the 2021 season at the earliest. OverTheCap has the Seahawks as having nearly $68 million available after the 2020 season.
Another scenario would be that Adams gets traded with the understanding that the Seahawks will work to extend him after the 2021 season. That’s less likely, but given Seattle’s current cap situation, that’s certainly an opinion they may have and favor.
Former NFL receiver Michael Bumpus said on Friday’s edition of Danny and Gallant that a trade for Adams depends on how high the Seahawks are on Blair, who will be entering his second NFL season.
“It’s all about Marquise Blair at this point,” he said. “Do you look at Jamal Adams and look at Marquise Blair and say ‘Blair will never get there’? But if I’m the Seattle Seahawks, I’m taking a chance on this guy. I feel bad that it puts Blair in a tough position, but it doesn’t mean he’s not going to grow into this All-Pro safety, this great safety, but I’d go with the guy who’s proven.”
Bumpus said that while the Seahawks don’t need to be rushing into splash moves, head coach Pete Carroll is getting older, as is star quarterback Russell Wilson.
“You’ve got to start putting guys into place to win right now and you have young guys for the future, but let’s go with the right now and I’m taking a chance on Adams,” he said.
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