The Cowboys once went to Seattle to play against a safety that had wanted to play in Dallas, but that the Cowboys had failed to come get. That player, Earl Thomas, had two interceptions in that game, the second one basically ending it. The Cowboys are not looking for a repeat.
Jamal Adams made a very public flirtation with the Cowboys, but was ultimately traded to the Seattle Seahawks when the Cowboys balked at the New York Jets asking price. The Cowboys once again find themselves heading to Seattle in the third game of the season, just like in 2018 versus Earl Thomas. In that game, Thomas kind of let the Cowboys know he had a little extra motivation in the game when he bowed to the Cowboys sideline after his second interception.
Earl Thomas literally just bowed to the Dallas Cowboys sideline after icing the game for Seattle pic.twitter.com/kRr5DswQGn— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) September 23, 2018
It appears Jamal Adams is feeling similarly motivated.
“I’ve seen a couple things, they said I struggle in coverage, so I can’t wait,” a smiling Adams told reporters Thursday. “I got a little text from one of my buddies back home. He has the inside scoop on that. So, looking forward to it.”
Asked who told him that about the Cowboys, he wouldn’t give up his sources.
“I can’t tell you that, man,” he said. “C’mon. I can’t give you the nuggets like that, man. I grew up with a couple guys who are still my brothers, best friends to this day. We talk every day, group messaging. What goes on in Dallas, it always comes back to me. I always find out the scoops. So just a little edge, a little chip on my shoulder to go out there and continue to do what I’m doing. Obviously, things happen. It’s part of the game. And hey, just looking forward to the matchup.”
The Cowboys would be wise to always figure out where Adams is on the field. He leads the Seahawks with two sacks and he is a tackling machine. Everyone knows he’s one of the top safeties in the league. But his skill-set isn’t exactly like the one Earl Thomas possesses.
Adams referenced the talk about his coverage skills as the reason for a little extra motivation. Turns out, the reference to his coverage issues was spot on so far this year.
Adams has blitzed 21 times so far, the third most by any player. The only two players who have blitzed more are Pittsburgh duo T.J. Watt (25) and Bud Dupree (24) and they are rush linebackers. Maybe this is linked — Adams is giving up 20.8 yards per reception allowed, that’s the eighth highest among players after two games. His yards per target is at 15.6. He’s also missed three tackles and his yards conceded is 187 — second most in the league behind only Quinton Dunbar (212).
In previous years, Adams’ pass rating against was in the 70s, not a bad number at all. This year, QBs have a 118.3 passer rating when targeting Adams. He also has an inflated 12.5% missed tackle rate.
Our own DannyPhantom put together this clip of the Patriots taking it to Adams on the long ball.
None of this is to infer that Adams isn’t elite, he is. But, it is to say that so far this season, Adams giveth and Adams taketh away.
When a player is hyped to stick it to another team, that can cut both ways. It can motivate him to do things like Thomas did to the Cowboys, but it can also make him over-aggressive. Sometimes that can be used against him.
We’ll just have to see which way it goes on Sunday.