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Jamal Adams may have ripped Adam Gase while forcing his way out of New York, but the All-Pro safety said he doesn’t regret how his departure from the Jets went down last summer as he prepares to face his original NFL team Sunday in a Seattle uniform.
Adams insisted Friday he no longer has a problem with the organization or Gase, who admitted earlier this week he was taken aback by his former star player’s parting criticisms.
“If Adam comes up to me and shakes my hand, I’m [going to] shake his hand. I’m at peace. I’m really a different guy,” Adams said on a Zoom call Friday from Seattle. “Adam Gase, we had a solid relationship. I don’t hate Adam Gase. I have no problem with Adam Gase. I just didn’t feel he handled certain situations well as a head coach. That’s just my opinion. … But there’s no hard feelings towards them.”
Earlier this season, Adams branded the Jets a “laughingstock” and claimed “they do not want to win.” He was dealt in July following a contract dispute with general manager Joe Douglas, landing the Jets two first-round picks, a third-rounder and safety Bradley McDougald.
“No regrets. Obviously, man, things happened the way it happened,” Adams said. “I had to do what I had to do to get out of my situation. And I’m happy to be here, I’m happy to be a Seattle Seahawk. I’m happy to be part of an organization that values me and respects me for who I am on and off the field.
“Honestly, the guys that make the decisions over there, they just didn’t value me like Seattle does.”
The 25-year-old Adams also revealed earlier this season that he battled depression during his three seasons in New York, in which the Jets went 16-32 with no playoff appearances.
“I have been working on myself on and off the field and I’m going to continue to get better. I’m at a different place in life and I’m happy. I’m beyond happy,” Adams said. “I was fighting it for so long, I didn’t speak about it.
“A lot of the days when I was in New York, I had to listen to music just to go into the building, just to stay positive and stay driven. I never had any suicidal thoughts or anything like that, but I knew I was going to make it out of the hole and I knew the storm was going to end one day.”
Adams missed four games earlier this season with shoulder issues, but his 7.5 sacks in eight games are a half-sack behind the NFL record for defensive backs — eight by the Cardinals’ Adrian Wilson in 2005.
“Obviously, breaking the record, I said I was going to do it last year when I failed. I always told myself whenever I put my mind to something I’m gonna get it done,” Adams said. “That’s just how I’m wired.
“It doesn’t matter what team is out there. It’s the next game. Obviously, we’re playing against the Jets and that is my former team. Would it be sweet? Yes, of course. But at the end of the day, I’m going out there to do my job and ultimately come out victorious. That’s what we’re shooting for.”
Adams noted that he isn’t reveling in the Jets’ 0-12 record, although he’s admittedly looking forward to “getting after” quarterback Sam Darnold — who Adams referred to as “one of my guys” — without a red non-contact practice jersey.
“I’m still gonna talk my noise [on the field], but I’m at peace with it, man,” Adams said. “At the end of the day I did what’s best for my family and myself and my career.
“I took a chance on myself at 24 years old. Many people didn’t think a 24-year-old would get out of his situation. They thought I was crazy, they thought I was a baby, but I stuck to it. I knew who I was as a person. I know my worth. And I have nothing but respect for the Jets organization. I pray one day that they do figure it out and they do get the ball rolling, because the fans deserve it over there.”