Jamal Adams nonetheless needs to be the NFL's highest paid safety

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Russell Wilson said he wanted more superstar talent in Seattle and general manager John Schneider has made that wish a reality.

The Seahawks acquired All-Pro safety Jamal Adams and a fourth-round pick from the New York Jets in exchange for safety Bradley McDougald, a 2021 first-round pick, a 2021 third-round pick, and a 2022 first-round pick. That’s a significant investment in Adams but given he’s arguably the game’s best safety, he may just be worth it. Especially given the upgrade maximizes the Seahawks chances of winning a championship this season. 

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Jamal Adams still wants to be the NFL's highest paid safety

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However, whether Adams is the NFL’s best safety or not, he expects to be paid like it.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that Adams has his sights set on being the NFL’s highest-paid safety. 

Jamal Adams still wants to be the NFL's highest paid safety

A large reason for Adams requesting a trade out of New York was the Jets reported unwillingness to give him an extension due to him being signed through 2021, with a franchise tag potentially looming in 2022. 

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Seahawks Podcast with host Joe Fann and special guest Gregg Bell to dissect the Seahawks offseason].

On June 12, 2020, Adams wrote on Instagram that the Jets were “A lot of talk, no action” indicating their unwillingness to commit long term money to him despite Adams delivering on the field. The Jets selected Adams sixth-overall in the 2017 NFL Draft and in just three seasons, Adams made two Pro Bowls and was named All-Pro in 2019. He has 273 total tackles, 12 career sacks, 28 tackles for loss, and six forced fumbles.

Currently, the league’s highest-paid safety is Chicago Bears safety Eddie Jackson who makes $14.6 million annually on his four-year $58.4 million contract extension signed earlier this year. 

One day after the trade, the Seahawks released center Joey Hunt and defensive lineman Branden Jackson which saves them about $4.26 million and gives the team about $18.7 million in total cap space.

[RELATED]: Seahawks release C Joey Hunt and DL Branden Jackson ahead of training camp

Perhaps that money will be used to pay Adams or to lure another big-name free agent such as Jadeveon Clowney or Eversen Griffin. Clowney reportedly lowered his asking price from $20M to somewhere in the $17M range. Seattle has previously offered him a deal in the $15 million range per ESPN’s John Clayton.

Meanwhile, Griffen was “hoping to be a $10 million a year guy” according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.

[RELATED]: Seahawks acquire Jamal Adams, could still land Everson Griffen too

Adams isn’t the only notable player to be traded to a new team on his rookie contract without a guarantee of a new deal. The Houston Texans sent a 2020 first-round pick, a 2021 first-round pick, and a 2021 second-round pick in the trade that acquired left tackle Laremy Tunsil. Then, later that season, the Los Angeles Rams traded first-round picks in 2020 and 2021 along with a fourth-round pick in 2021 to Jacksonville for Jalen Ramsey.  

After one season in their new destinations, Tunsil signed a three-year extension for $66 million with $57.85 million guaranteed while Ramsey said he will report to 2020 training camp without an extension in place. 

Given how much draft capital Seattle gave up in the trade, it’s clear that the franchise expects Adams to be a part of its long term future. An extension is a matter of when, not if. 

Jamal Adams still wants to be the NFL’s highest paid safety originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest

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