The Chicago Bears need some revamping in their secondary, especially in regards to safety. General Manager Ryan Pace addressed the issue at his end of the year press conference saying that the secondary is in dire need of some playmakers.
With the third overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, Pace can undoubtedly add a playmaker by drafting LSU safety Jamal Adams. The 6-foot-1, 211-pound Tiger ended his junior season with 76 total tackles, 7.5 tackles for a loss, one interception, one forced fumble and four passes defended.
For opposing teams ball carriers that have faced Adams, they know all too well where he will be at the end of the play – either a foot or two away eyeing them down, or standing, swinging his fist in the air after delivering an excruciating blow.
Adams’ ability to fight off blocks, avoid defenders and flow to the ball are what make him a sought-after talent in this upcoming draft.
In the video below, I breakdown three games from Adams’ 2016 season.
- His best game against Auburn, where he registered 13 total tackles, nine solo and four assists
- His worst game against Wisconsin, where he registered five total tackles, three solo and two assists
- The last game was a good matchup, where he played Alabama and registered six total tackles, three solo, three assists and one interception
Nick’s Quick Breakdown – Jamal Adams – S – LSU https://t.co/b2cTKbDy0V
— Da Bears Brothers (@DaBearsBros) February 1, 2017
After watching the video, take a look at the Gifs below that showcase his skillset and reinforce what I discussed.
Look at this play against Wisconsin – where Adams is 10-yard deep, recognizes it’s a run play, barrels right through the wide receiver and finishes the runner for only a two-yard gain.
On a second and goal against Alabama with just under four minutes left in the fourth quarter, Adams jumped over the line of scrimmage, located the ball carrier and made a tackle for no gain.
It’s not just in the run game where Adams excels, against the pass he has the football intelligence to dissect various route combinations and uses his speed to close in on receivers. On this play, Adams is lined up eight yards off the slot receiver, and as soon as the ball is snapped the receiver does a three-yard quick out and Adams is there immediately to minimize the gain.
From the same game, Auburn motions into a three-wide receiver set to Adams’ side. The outside receiver runs a pick route, middle runs a corner and the inside runs a quick out. Adams is responsible for the middle receiver and stays disciplined and doesn’t get sucked into the quick out. Instead, he undercuts his man, which leaves nowhere for the quarterback to throw, and results in a sack.
Adams is a great player, there is no denying that, but there were some instances where his natural gift of finding the ball-carrier ended up hurting him. Since Adams knows how to stop the run instinctively, he has a tendency to get sucked in on play action.
Against Auburn, a receiver comes in motion for a possible handoff, Adams plays up and the running back does a swing route that gets behind the defense. It’s hard to tell whether the running back was Adams’ man or the linebacker, but still, lack of communication between the two generated a big play for the offense.
Back to the Alabama game, Adams is lined up in the slot seven-yards deep. Quarterback Jalen Hurts runs to Adams’ side and makes a quick move on him to avoid the tackle. Adams likes to deliver big hits, but at times will lower his head and lose sight of the ball carrier.
With that being said, Adams is still a first-round talent. Whoever drafts him, will be getting a player who can make an impact day one. If that team is the Bears, fans should welcome him with open arms as Chicago will have its best safety in a long time.