49ers film room: How Jets Jamal Adams would take Niners to next level

Jamal Adams #33 of the New York Jets. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
Jamal Adams #33 of the New York Jets. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /
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Jamal Adams, New York Jets
Jamal Adams #33 of the New York Jets (Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images) /

No. 7: The 49ers pass defense was historically great, could Jamal Adams improve it?

Whilst Jamal Adams might not be the best cover safety, that title arguably belongs to the Los Angeles Chargers’ Derwin James, Adams is still exceptional.

Adams combines his eyes, instincts and smarts to consistently break up passes. Adams has been effective in both man and zone coverage, especially when asked to play man-on-man coverage against Rob Gronkowski when he played for the Patriots.

Here is Adams defending a fade route run by Gronkowski in the red zone.

When Gronkowski lines up outside on the right and Adams follows, the Patriots and their quarterback, Tom Brady, know it is man coverage. Adams plays off Gronkowski, as Adams knows what route is coming, and allows Gronkowski to run his route with very little interference. When Gronkowski turns his body and looks back for the ball, Adams also turns and breaks up the inaccurate throw:

Adams should have intercepted the pass as it was thrown in front of Gronkowski, therefore allowing Adams to make a play on the ball.

Fortunately for the Patriots, Adams did not make the interception.