With safety Jamal Adams eligible to renegotiate his rookie contract, the Jets and general manager Joe Douglas have a decision on their hands.
Upon the completion of Year 3 in the NFL, Adams enters 2020 with one year left on the four-year, $22 million deal he signed as the 2017 draft's sixth overall pick.
Speaking at Tuesday's end-of-year press conference as the offseason begins, Douglas acknowledged that the Jets will go over Adams' situation later in the week.
"We do know that he is officially eligible to renegotiate his rookie deal," Douglas said. "And as all of you know, Jamal's an amazing player. And we saw what he did all year. But really, when we deployed him, he was such a factor as a pass rusher. Around the box, he did so many good things. His leadership -- obviously, voted team MVP by his peers -- a special guy.
"Obviously, we're just starting our process. We're going to get in with the coaching staff. We're going to go -- that's really the start of our entire process, as far as talking about each player, which contract, what we're going to do moving forward. So that's something we're going to discuss at the end of the week."
Despite an ankle injury that sidelined him two games, Adams notched career-best numbers with 6 1/2 sacks and 10 tackles for loss. Adams added the first two defensive touchdowns of his career, too, housing an interception 61 yards and taking a strip-sack return 25 yards. A two-time Pro Bowl pick after earning a spot in Jan. 27's game, Adams proved his worth for the Jets, who have a number of personnel decisions to figure out.
"Some teams say, 'We're not renegotiating a contract with two years remaining,'" Douglas said. "Some teams have rules like that. I've never been at a place that had a hard-fast rule like that. I think, in a lot of cases in football, you take it on a case-by-case basis."
"It was never serious with Jamal" - Joe Douglas on getting calls about Jamal Adams at the deadline pic.twitter.com/9yodT5yJuz- Jets Videos (@snyjets) December 31, 2019
Douglas was a Baltimore Ravens scout (2000-14), Chicaco Bears director of scouting (2015) and Philadelphia Eagles vice president of player personnel (2016-19) before replacing Mike Maccagnan (2015-18) as the Jets' general manager June 7.
Adams was one pick Maccagnan evidently got right, since blossoming into one of the NFL's best defensive players with 272 tackles (28 for loss), 12 sacks (23 quarterback hits) and eight turnovers forced (two interceptions and six fumbles) through his first three seasons.
With water under the bridge from Oct. 29's trade deadline, when Douglas did not move Adams despite other teams' calls, the next steps regarding a possible renegotiation remain to be seen.
"After the trade deadline, Jamal and I were able to have a great conversation," Douglas said. "We were able to have a great conversation (Monday). I will say, again, when teams call, you listen. But how serious things get after the initial call -- that depends on the other team. And so, like I said, it was never serious with Jamal. Things never got to a really serious stage with him at the trade deadline. So that's really all I have to say about that."