NFL Rumors: 4 Potential Trade Destinations for Jets' Jamal Adams

John Healy
May 22, 2020 - 9:00 am

For as productive as safety Jamal Adams has been in his first three NFL seasons, his relationship with the New York Jets hasn't been without its bumps in the road.

Adams is set to make just $7 million entering the final year of his rookie contract, although there is also a one-year extension the Jets can exercise for 2021 before they absolutely have to pay, or franchise tag, Adams.

The Jets reportedly did listen to calls for Adams last trade deadline, but did so with an asking price that teams weren't willing to meet. All evidence suggests that they would prefer to keep the former first-round pick over the long-term, if at all possible.

However, not all evidence suggests they'll be successful in their attempt to keep Adams beyond his rookie contract. Rich Cimini of ESPN reported Thursday that the Jets have "reached an impasse" with Adams' representatives in contract discussions. The report goes on to suggest that Adams hopes to sign a new contract before Week 1 of the 2020 NFL season, while the Jets may not possess that same sense of urgency.

In three seasons with the Jets, the 24-year-old has proven to be the heart and soul of Gang Green’s defense and one of the most impactful safeties in the game, totaling 12 sacks, 210 tackles, six forced fumbles, four fumbles recovered and two interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown.

Adams garnered First-Team All-Pro honors last season with a career-high 6.5 sacks in addition to seven passes defended, 61 tackles, two forced fumbles and an interception.

Those numbers should have any GM trying to contend for a Super Bowl in 2020 trying to pick up the phone and call Jets general manager Joe Douglas. Here are four potential destinations:

Dallas Cowboys

Jerry Jones smiles at a Cowboys press conference.
Photo credit Getty Images

The Cowboys were linked to Adams last season at the trade deadline, but the asking price was reportedly too high as the Jets asked for a first- and two second-round picks for Adams. But with Adams clearly unhappy, perhaps that price comes down a bit, bringing Dallas back to the negotiating table. The Cowboys have already added one Pro Bowl safety this year in Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, but Adams ahas the higher ceiling and is the more versatile player. Plus, Jerry Jones is not one to shy away from a flashy deal, and with the Cowboys’ window to win a Super Bowl now, it makes sense to add a playmaker like Adams to the defense.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs TE OJ Howard looks top pick up yardage.
Photo credit Getty Imags

While Jets fans may not be able to stomach a trade that helps Tom Brady possibly win yet another Super Bowl, the Bucs are certainly a team that is in win-now mode and could use a player like Adams. Tampa Bay already has a robust pass rush that includes Jason Pierre-Paul and Shaquil Barrett, but adding Adams would give Bruce Arians a Tyrann Mathiue-type safety that he had during his time in Arizona that could make the Bucs defense downright scary.

While the Jets could use a receiver more, they also have need for a tight end, a position that the Bucs are deep at after acquiring Rob Gronkowski from the Patriots. O.J. Howard or Cameron Brate could be an interesting addition to a trade package that would be heavy on picks.

Philadelphia Eagles

Malcolm Jenkins jogs off the field with the Eagles.
Photo credit Getty Images

The Eagles let Malcolm Jenkins walk in free agency this offseason and not only lost a three-time Pro Bowl safety, but also a leader and sparkplug of the defense. Who better to fill those shoes than Jamal Adams? He would join Darius Slay in a revamped Eagles secondary that was among the worst in the NFL in 2019.

The only problem here, however, is Philadelphia does not currently have the cap space to sign Adams to an extension. Looking at the contracted players for 2021 via, there is not a whole lot of fat the Eagles can trim, either. They could trade for Adams and exercise his fifth-year option, but then the safety is just back in the same position he is with the Jets and would be unhappy as well. If the Eagles really wanted Adams, they’d have to find a way to get creative with the cap and restructure some deals.

Miami Dolphins

Brian Flores looks on before a Dolphins game.
Photo credit Getty Images

Okay, okay, these two teams trading with one another is more unlikely than Rex Ryan having Geno Smith over for Thanksgiving dinner, but the two AFC East rivals make sense for one another. The Dolphins need a safety after trading away Minkah Fitzpatrick last year. The Jets won’t trade Adams unless the return is significant. Even after using three first-round picks in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Dolphins do possess two first-round picks and two second-round picks in the 2021 NFL Draft, though.

If the Dolphins were to package a first and a second-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, the Jets could collect significant draft capital. It makes some sense on the surface level, but would either of these two teams be willing to help the other out within the same division? The answer is likely no, but these are unusual times we are living in, so never say never.

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