The son of a former NFL running back (George, who played at Kentucky and on the Super Bowl champion New York Giants team of 1986) looks like he's grown up with the game. Even in LSU's always-loaded secondary, the nation's top safety recruit got on the field a significant amount as a true freshman (two starts, 66 tackles, five break-ups, 10 special teams tackles). When given the chance to start as a sophomore, Adams garnered second-team All-SEC honors by making 67 stops, four interceptions and six pass break-ups. Coaches voted him second-team all-conference after his junior year (76 tackles, 7.5 for loss, one interception, four pass break-ups) even though the Associated Press put him on their first-team All-American squad due to his all-around impact for the Tigers' defense.
Natural-born leader of men. Well-built. Will not hesitate for one second as a hitter. Steps downhill looking to punish running backs to set a tone for defense. Toggles between patient and urgent in treks to the ball. Plays off blockers. Approaches target with open arms and wide, balanced base to limit escape routes. Intelligent field general. Gets secondary aligned properly. Plays with plus balance in coverage. Pattern reader who can digest combinations. Alert for misdirection keys from offense. Party crasher on screen plays. Can handle coverage responsibilities against tight ends. Five interceptions and two recovered fumbles over last two seasons at LSU. Special-teams terror as freshman and sophomore, notching 21 tackles. No penalties in 2016. Father, George, was a first-round pick of the Giants in 1984.
Handsy and too willing to clamp onto receivers down the field. Hard-charging downhill, but a little stiff when asked to retreat. Long speed appears to be average on tape. Eyes drop when targets approach his area. Anticipation is average, limiting his range as a center-fielder. Will give away some interceptions due to drops. Slower coming to balance as tackler on bursting runners between the tackles. Desire to limit cutbacks leads to challenging play-side tackles. Doesn't pursue with expected vigor from across the field. Aggressiveness opens him up against play-action.
Sources Tell Us
"The people who have been at that program the longest think he might be the best leader LSU has had in years. He's a no-doubt first-rounder. He can play all over the field and he could have an immediate impact on defense just like Landon Collins did coming out. I love him. I think he's a winner." - AFC area scout
Interchangeable safety with a sheriff's mentality. Adams is a physical tone-setter who should thrive near the line of scrimmage or in a robber role. Should be a commanding presence in the locker room early on and his do-as-I-do play demeanor could be the catalyst for turning a struggling defense around quickly.