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Jamal Adams Says He ‘Fought Depression’ Before Jets Traded Him to Seahawks

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Seattle Seahawks strong safety Jamal Adams (33) walks on the field during the second half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020, in Orchard Park, N.Y. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

Adrian Kraus/Associated Press

Spending three seasons with the New York Jets took a toll on Jamal Adams‘ mental health.

The Jets traded Adams to the Seattle Seahawks in July. The All-Pro safety said on the All Things Covered podcast he “fought depression in New York.” He said his father was even concerned for him and reached out to his agent to resolve the matter.

Adams said he was especially frustrated because he felt the Jets “do not want to win.”

Bryant McFadden @BMac_SportsTalk

We truly appreciate Jamal Adams not only for joining @ATCoveredPod, but for opening up and feeling comfortable sharing that he fought depression while with the Jets.

Real happy to see @Prez thriving in the right spot for him now.

https://t.co/WFVCupoo18 https://t.co/Ll7pRSJBH6

All Things Covered @ATCoveredPod

The Jets did not want to let Jamal Adams go and double-checked with him before they went through with trading him to the Seahawks over the summer 👀 https://t.co/8V6ZosxCZ9 https://t.co/OLkIcRvNa5

New York went 16-32 through Adams’ first three years, and the team is 0-9 to open 2020.

The Seahawks, on the other hand, reached the playoffs in six of the past seven seasons. Their 6-3 mark puts them in the hunt for an NFC West title or at least a wild-card berth. Joining a genuine contender was obviously a refreshing change for Adams.

The Jets’ prolonged futility wasn’t the only reason the franchise’s relationship with the 25-year-old broke down. He told the New York Daily News Manish Mehta in July how his contract standoff soured him on the idea of remaining in New York:

“It’s definitely mixed feelings. But at the end of the day, my happiness is more important. I know my worth. I’m going to stand on my beliefs. I’m going to stand on who I am as a person. And I’m not ever going to change who I am for somebody who’s judging me. Either you accept me for who I am and you work with me and support me or you don’t. It’s okay if you don’t.”

His recent comments put those references to his happiness and outside support into a different context as well.

The need to win is particularly acute in the NFL. Playing careers are generally shorter compared to other sports, and contracts often aren’t fully guaranteed. Adams’ former teammate Le’Veon Bell is a prime example of how quickly things can turn for a player who was considered the best at his position.

Rebuilds sound great in theory, but they’re a much easier sell when you’re not on the field as the losses continue to pile up.

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