Home | Articles | Film Room | Revisiting Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye’s dominant performance vs. Pittsburgh

Revisiting Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye’s dominant performance vs. Pittsburgh

Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye
Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye, New York Jets, Getty Images

Michael Nania reviews the game that established Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye as perhaps the best safety duo in the NFL.

When the Mike Maccagnan-led Jets selected Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye in back-to-back rounds to headline their 2017 Draft class, their intentions were clear – to form a duo of young safeties who compliment each other well enough to uphold the secondary for years to come.

Three years in, the Batman & Robin safety tandem has proven to be Maccagnan’s parting gift that keeps on giving.

Twenty-nineteen was a marvelous season for the pair. Adams was named a First-Team All-Pro. Maye stayed healthy for all 16 games and established himself as one of the best single-high safeties in the league.

The duo’s destructiveness was most glaringly evident in two games – the Jets’ Week 6 win over Dallas, and their Week 16 win over Pittsburgh. Today, we will analyze their performance in the latter game.

Adams and Maye were everywhere that afternoon. Here are just some of the numbers highlighting their excellence:


  • 3 passing game tackles shy of the first down marker
  • 2 run stuffs for one yard or less
  • Pressure to force a third down incomplete pass
  • Pressure to force a Devlin Hodges interception
  • Pressure to force rushed/errant throw on Pittsburgh’s final chance of the game


  • 2 potential touchdown passes thwarted (one of those intercepted)
  • 2 potential long run plays stopped

Let’s start from the beginning of the first quarter and run through every positive play that Adams and Maye made throughout the game.

1ST & 10 AT PIT 21 (Q1, 10:21)

Adams is in man coverage against James Washington and follows him across the formation when he motions right. Steve McLendon and Henry Anderson create penetration to force the ball outside. Adams reads the action as it unfolds, mirroring James Conner’s outside cut. He beats Washington’s block and finishes Conner down low. It’s a one-yard loss for the Steelers on their first offensive play.

Jamal Adams

That play was one of Adams’ seven tackles for loss in the run game on the season, third-most among safeties despite the fact that he was only 28th in run defense snaps played (343).

Jets X-Factor Membership
Sorry, the content stops here if you’re not a Jet X Member, not currently logged-in, or viewing from an outside source such as Google AMP or an RSS Feed where logged-in status is not possible.

Get Started with the button below to access this Jets X-Factor article and the best damn New York Jets content in the world for free (after becoming a member, search for this article near the bottom of the Membership Confirmation page):
Jets X-Factor, Get Started
Log In with the button below if you’re already a member:
Jets X-Factor, Log In
Connect with the button below if you’d like to create a free account first:
Jets X-Factor, Connect

Want More Jet X?

Subscribe to become a Jet X Member to unlock every piece of Jets X-Factor content (film breakdowns, analytics, Sabo with the Jets, etc.), get audio versions of each article, receive the ability to comment within our community, and experience an ad-free platform experience.

Download the free Jet X Mobile App to get customizable notifications directly to your iOS (App Store) or Android (Google Play) device.

Sign up for Jet X Daily, our daily newsletter that's delivered to your inbox every morning at 8:00 a.m. ET.

Add Jets X-Factor to your Google News feed and/or find us on Apple News to stay updated with the New York Jets.

Follow us on X (Formerly Twitter) @jetsxfactor for all the latest New York Jets news, Facebook for even more, Instagram for some of the top NY Jets images, and YouTube for original Jets X-Factor videos.

Related Articles

About the Author

More From Author