Growing up in the Dallas suburbs, there was one team to root for in the Adams household. But it wasn’t America’s Team.
“I was literally the biggest Giants fan,” Jets rookie safety Jamal Adams said. “That’s all I knew.”
His father, George, played for Big Blue from 1985-89, and Adams adored his dad’s old team. He had Giants jerseys, a Giants clock and Giants posters on his wall. Saturday night, he gets to face his favorite childhood team.
“It’s really ironic how everything happens,” the first-round pick out of LSU said on Wednesday after practice.
The Adams family are now Jets fans. George will be in attendance Saturday night.
“This is definitely one of the games he has circled,” Adams said.
The only downside will be the absence of Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., an LSU alum like Adams who suffered a sprained ankle Monday against the Browns and almost certainly won’t play. The two missed each other in college — Adams’ first year at LSU was Beckham’s rookie season in the NFL — but they developed a bond.
“I’m really close with ‘O.’ We’re honestly like brothers,” Adams said. “One thing about LSU: We stick together. It’s a brotherhood. Great players come through, in and out. It’s honestly like a factory. It’s NFL/LSU, as we call it.”
Adams saw the one-handed catches by Beckham up close before they became an internet staple. He would like to see how he matches up with one of the sport’s best at some point.
“I never covered him, so hopefully one day I get that opportunity,” Adams said. “It would be a fun one.”
As a Giants fan, Adams was particularly fond of Tiki Barber, Corey Webster, Plaxico Burress, and Hakeem Nicks. When asked about his favorite moment, he smiled, recalling Super Bowl XLII in 2008, the Giants upsetting the previously undefeated Patriots on Eli Manning’s touchdown pass in the waning seconds to Burress.
“Favorite [memory of] all time,” he said.
But that’s all history now.
“All day Jets,” Adams said. “Nothing but green and white.”
The Jets are clearly thrilled to have him. Adams and fellow rookie safety Marcus Maye have impressed coaches and teammates with their ability, attitude and work ethic.
Defensive backs coach said he Dennard Wilson thinks the duo could play in a regular-season game right now.
“They’re ready,” he said. “Just like anything in life, you have to be thrown in the fire. They’re prepared.”
But last Saturday, in the Jets’ second preseason game against the Lions in Detroit, Adams had a couple of rookie moments, missing a few tackles. He didn’t like the feeling.
“It’s a big deal to me — I don’t miss tackles,” Adams said. “I pride myself on tackling. It’s going to get cleaned up. It will be corrected.