FRISCO - "I see the game much clearer now,'' Jamal Adams tweeted recently. "It's all business.''
The New York Jets star safety isn't the only one starting to see the light as it regards his conflict regarding a contract extension that was "expected'' to happen by some people ... some people including Jamal Adams himself.
“I’d be lying if I said I don’t expect to be extended,'' the standout safety said during Super Bowl Week on Jan. 29. "I do. Not for what I’ve just done on the field but even off the field for what I’ve done for the organization. I’ve done everything they’ve asked me to do. I’ve done it at a high level each and every year.”
Adams added via Twitter at that time: "I want to be in New York!''
But the clock keeps ticking. And suddenly, anybody who has been slow to catch up on what we've been writing since October is starting to catch on.
Adams expected to hold out when the Jets begin their "virtual offseason program''? Makes sense. Some in the national media finally figuring out how this might end? It's about time.
The Dallas Cowboys being involved? As I've been writing since October: Yes. If the Jets cannot fix this, Dallas will attempt to swoop in with a trade offer and a contract offer.
It's been, what, six months of us writing about that in this space? The Jets engaged the Dallas Cowboys in NFL deadline trade talks - talks that were not exactly "close'' - they Cowboys offered a first-round pick and cornerback Anthony Brown and New York essentially wanted three times that.
Maybe New York wasn't serious enough. But the subject was broached. The dream (Dallas' and, we will educated-guess DFW native Adams', too) was launched. And if the holdout is real, the New York situation is about to get more serious.
And until New York Jets pays Jamal Adams like he's the best safety in the game? The subject lives. The dream lives.
Back in October, Dallas pretty much offered too little, and the Jets - maybe gauging the market without any serious intention of doing a deal - maybe asked for too much, at different times requesting a first-, a second- and a third-rounder plus the involvement of an All-Pro offensive lineman, Zack Martin or Tyron Smith.
Along the way, Adams expressed some dissatisfaction with the Jets. But then Adams, 24, the LSU product and Carrollton native who still spends a lot of time in DFW, swallowed that dissatisfaction. Why? He surely worked on the assumption that New York would acknowledge that their top pick (sixth overall) in the 2017 NFL Draft, who has become a two-time Pro Bowler and an All-Pro, has lived up to the billing. ... and lived up to a contract in excess of what the Chicago Bears have done with free safety Eddie Jackson, who recently became the highest-paid player at the position after signing a four-year, $58.4 million extension that includes $33 million in guaranteed money.
“As all of you know, Jamal is an amazing player,” Jets GM Joe Douglas said. “We saw what he did all year ... He did so many good things. He’s a special guy.”
But October became January. And now January has become April. Maybe an Adams deal with the Jets will happen tomorrow. Or maybe ...
Yes, it's a business. Yes, Jets talks with Adams could break down. Yes, if there is an opening up of a window for a bidder? Dallas will be a bidder. I guarantee it.
Can the timing of such a breakdown leading to a blockbuster trade happen before the April 23 NFL Draft? Meaning that the price Dallas would sacrifice would include a first-round pick (No. 17) in this draft? Unlikely; there is not enough reason (yet) for the Jets and Adams to give up on one another quite that quickly. ...
But the pick-plus-Brown offer can be upped. Easily.
As to the question of whether the new Mike McCarthy-led coaching staff will like Adams as much as the previous administration did? 1) Adams is literally the best player on the Jets roster. Everybody likes that. 2) McCarthy's Packers used safeties who play in the box, where Adams literally dominates. 3) The head coach changed. The personnel department didn't. If Stephen Jones/Will McClay can hand an All-Pro safety to this coaching staff, there will be no objections.
Meanwhile, Dallas figured out the finances of this in October. If a player of this caliber comes available again? The cap guys at The Star will figure it out again. And while it is true that as teams get closer to the draft they tend to fall in love with the prospect of "new toys'' ... Would you rather have a Delpit or a McKinney, guys who aspire to be Jamal Adams? Or just employ the real deal?
“I’ve proven that I’m the best safety doing it right now,” Adams recently said, making his public pitch to the Jets ... and, presumably, anybody else interested in listening. “I’m not trying to be paid just to be 'the highest-paid whatever.' I’m trying to get paid for my status and what I’ve done. That’s what I’m about right now.”
He's also about a holdout. And now that he has everybody's attention, it's worth mentioning that he's always had the Cowboys'.