Home | Articles | Film Room | 5 plays that show why Jamal Adams is such a destructive pass rusher

5 plays that show why Jamal Adams is such a destructive pass rusher

Jamal Adams
Getty Images

Jamal Adams is changing the safety position. These five plays showcase why.

Jamal Adams has redefined the limits of what an NFL safety can do as a pass rusher. After setting a new record for the position with 18 pressures in 2018 (since the stat was first tracked in 2006), Adams came out and clobbered that record with 23 pressures in 2019 – even while missing two games.

Of the 352 players (at any position) with at least 50 pass rush snaps in 2019, nobody created pressure at a higher rate than Adams (25.6%), who picked up his 23 pressures over just 90 opportunities.

What makes Adams so special in this phase is that he has legitimate rushing skills. Any defensive back can get home if their coach sends them at the right time. Adams is able to go beyond what is schemed up for him through his package of pure pass-rush traits that few DBs in league history have boasted.

It’s a combination of both mental and physical proficiency that makes Adams an unstoppable force. Adams times the snap well, knows how to masquerade his intentions, and takes crisp/efficient routes to the quarterback. Physically, he can power through tight ends or running backs, can win with speed and quickness, has the motor to chase down from the backside, and even shows off some finesse moves.

Let’s dig into five tremendous plays that exemplify what sets Adams apart as a pass rusher.

Hesitation move vs. Redskins (Finesse)

Most defensive backs have very little polish to their pass rushing game. They usually run as fast as they can towards the pocket and hope for the best, lacking the ability to defeat blockers in any way.

Adams is a different breed. He has all of the tools necessary to evade obstacles and reach his destination.

On this play, Adams uses a subtle hesitation that forces the left tackle (Donald Penn) to open up, freeing himself to get around the corner and bring down Dwayne Haskins. Also take note of how Adams dips his inside shoulder to bend the edge and avoid the tackle’s punch, sealing his victory.

Safeties are not supposed to have those weapons in their arsenal.

Manhandling of Saquon Barkley (Power)

Adams had one of the best individual defensive performances of the 2019 season against the Giants, highlighted by two strip-sacks of Daniel Jones in which he destroyed Saquon Barkley.

The second of the two was downright rude.

Adams shows how much of a mismatch he is against a running back in a 1-on-1 situation. He lowers his center of gravity and gets his inside arm into Barkley’s chest (who foolishly lowers his head) to blast him back, then reworking his hand up to Barkley’s shoulder to toss him out of the way. Adams snatches the ball from Jones and takes it to the house.

I mean. . . sheesh! This angle prominently showcases how dominant that play was.

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