After the 2022 NFL Draft, the New York Jets and New York Giants were competing for the same player.
Tony Adams didn’t hear his name called as one of the draft picks, but he was a hot commodity in undrafted free agency. Accordingly Rich Cimini from ESPN: “He actually received a better financial offer from the Giants than the Jets after the ’22 draft, but chose to sign with the Jets because he felt their zone-based scheme was a better fit.”
The rest, as they say, is history before these two cross-city rivals meet in Week 8.
Adams is an up-and-coming player with a lot of potential for the Jets
Last offseason, Adams was the surprise of training camp, making the 53-man roster as an undrafted free agent. He was a surprise again this offseason, but for a very different reason.
Not only was Adams’ place in the squad secured, but his starting appearance was also at the end of the rainbow. The Jets felt so comfortable with him that he earned veteran treatment throughout the preseason.
It’s unusual for a 24-year-old former free agent to be completely inactive during preseason games. However, it was an obvious sign from the coaching staff that he had already secured his place in the squad and starting eleven.
Adams beat out veteran Adrian Amos for the first safety gig before the 2023 season. Adams started four of the six games this season; He missed the other two due to injury.
The previous Illinois product has 22 tackles, one pass deflection this year and recorded a crucial interception that set up the game-winning touchdown in the Philadelphia Eagles’ Week 6 game.
Everything is connected between the Jets and Giants
The Jets won the Adams sweepstakes in undrafted free agency, but the Giants ultimately benefited.
Allow me to explain.
Head coach Robert Saleh and general manager Joe Douglas discussed what to do with the final 53-man roster at the end of August 2022.
Ultimately the Jets decided to keep Adams on the team because they feared he would be claimed on waivers. Saleh said Adams had a “bright future” and “we would have been sick if we had lost him.”
The Jets’ decision to retain Adams was unexpected; he signed as an undrafted free agent. That forced the Green-Whites to do so Cut ties definitely Jason Pinnock.
Gang Green was hoping he would come through waivers and they could bring him back to the practice squad, but the football gods had other plans.
The Giants decided to claim him off waivers, poaching him from their cross-city rivals. Pinnock is 24 years old and originally entered the NFL with the No. 175 pick in the fifth round of the 2021 NFL Draft.
Since is claimed With the Giants, he not only remained on the roster, but also developed into a full-time starter. In two seasons, Pinnock appeared in 21 games and made 12 starts.
The former Pitt product has begun in all seven games this season for Big Blue. In that time, he has totaled 40 tackles, one sack and one interception returned 102 yards to the house for a touchdown.
If Adams had never signed with the Jets, Pinnock would probably still be there. Although his decision to spurn the Giants and move to the Jets will now forever link him to Pinnock.
Adams is under contract with the Jets through the 2024 season. In 2025, he will be a restricted free agent for the Jets to tender. Pinnock is too under contract through the 2024 season, but he doesn’t have to be a restricted free agent in 2025 because, unlike Adams, he was drafted.
Ultimately, it is a success story for both players and their teams. They all have bright futures and will be under cheap team control for several years.
Paul A. Esden Jr. covers the New York Jets for Heavy.com. The New York native is also the official PA voice of the Syracuse Strong Football Club and co-host of Cumulus Media’s morning show “The Manchild Show with Boy Green.” Prior to joining Heavy in 2021, Esden Jr. covered both national and New York sports for FanSided, Elite Sports NY and The Score 1260. More about Paul A. Esden Jr.