Former NFL GM Randy Mueller: Trading Jamal Adams "a step backwards" for the New York Jets

Kristian Dyer

It is a real test for Joe Douglas, the first real gut check scenario since he took over as general manager of the New York Jets last summer. The slow, pragmatic pursuit of a contract extension with Jamal Adams is the right move, so says former NFL general manager Randy Mueller. He also warns, however, that trading Adams could and would be “a cause for a step backwards.”

According to recent reporting from Gary Myers, the Jets and All-Pro safety Jamal Adams are currently at an impasse over a contract extension and that the star player could become a trade target. This puts the Jets in a difficult spot. Adams is set to enter his fourth season of a five-year rookie contract. He wants an extension, one that would make him the highest-paid safety in the NFL. Based off his play last year, there is no doubt that Adams is the best safety in the league and deserving of such a contract.

The Jets, however, are taking the slow track according to Mueller. Having been in similar situations when it comes to contract negotiations and possible holdouts, Mueller thinks the Jets are going the prudent route. On Friday afternoon, however, things might have accelerated a bit.

Myers added to his original reporting with an update that the Dallas Cowboys have interest in trading for Adams.

Mueller is a former general manager of the New Orleans Saints and the Miami Dolphins. He thinks the Jets need to move slowly but warns against the idea of trading away a player who was their only Pro Bowl selection last year and a is a voice of the team.

“The financially responsible thing is to not pay him until you have to. He’s tied to Jets for two [more] years and he plays a position that’s tough to reward with a max deal,” Mueller told SportsIllustrated.com.

“The Seahawks let Earl Thomas walk- the Chargers let Eric Weddle walk. Safety is not looked at by some as a valued, spend big money on position. Much like a offensive guard or at times running back. It’s just hard to build around a safety. But from a team building standpoint you need to take care of your best players. If he is viewed by management as ‘our core-top leader- difference maker’ they have to find common ground. He’s young and replacing him will be cause for a step backwards. The Jets have the leverage and hold the cards. If I am the Jets, I go as slow as I can for as long as I can but eventually he gets “some” money. The fact that they have not talked money means that this is on the slow track.”

Last year, Adams produced the best season of his three years in the league. The former first round pick had 75 tackles, 13 quarterback hits, 6.5 sacks and an interception in 14 games played. The Cowboys reportedly reached out to the Jets late last year on the cusp of the trade deadline to enquire about his availability in a trade.

Adams hails from Lewisville, TX just outside of Dallas.