Things between the Jets and star safety Jamal Adams are getting messy … again.
ESPN reported that Adams will not participate in the virtual offseason program, which begins April 27 and is voluntary, because he is unhappy the team has not expressed official interest in extending his contract.
Adams, 24, is in the final year of his rookie contract and is scheduled to make just $3.5 million this season, far below what the top safeties are making. Adams is coming off a season when he was named first-team All-Pro and made his second Pro Bowl.
Jets general manager Joe Douglas has said in February that he wants Adams to be a “Jet for life.”
Still, it appears the Jets are in no rush to get anything done. While Adams said in January that his representatives and the Jets had talked, sources said those were very preliminary discussions. Douglas recently said his priority was free agency and the 2020 NFL in relation to an Adams extension.
Adams does not have much leverage because the Jets can keep control of him for a while. They surely will pick up his fifth-year option for 2021 soon and they can use the franchise tag on him in 2022 if they choose.
It seems unlikely that that scenario will play out, but the Jets may want to wait until next year to extend his contract. Of the 191 first-round picks from 2011 to 2016, only 15 have received contract extensions after their third season. Of those 15, only four were defensive players. Even Rams star Aaron Donald had to wait until after his fourth season to get an extension.
The Jets angered Adams in the middle of last season when they entertained trade offers for him, most notably from the Cowboys. It is possible his name could come up again during next week’s draft in trade discussions.