Jamal Adams Rips NFL For $21K Fine On Baker Mayfield Hit

Jets Safety Criticizes League On Social Media

Alec Gearty
September 19, 2019 - 8:39 am

Jets safety Jamal Adams received a substantial fine for his first-quarter hit on Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield on Monday night.

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Adams will lose roughly $21,000 as a result of the league's punishment. He broke the news of the fine on social media in the aftermath of the Jets' disastrous Week 2. Adams expressed his frustration with the NFL, calling the league out for its "soft rules."

“This league is a damn joke,” Adams shared on social media. “I just got fined $21k for this hit. I signed up to play football not two hand touch. Bull—! I don’t give a damn about these soft rules protecting QBs. I’m gonna play MY brand of football everytime I step on the field. SMH”

The hit, however, didn’t go without punishment in the Jets’ 23-3 loss to the Browns. Adams was called for roughing the passer and penalized 15 yards. Cleveland ended the drive with a field goal to take a 6-0 lead in the game, capitalizing on Adams’ penalty.

Adams can be seen immediately disagreeing with the officials in the 23-second clip posted on Wednesday night. It’s the first time Adams was hit with a fine from the league, which results in the league-minimum fine of $21,056. Adams could lose upwards of $42,115 if another roughing the passer call warrants a fine.

"It bothered me a lot because it's kind of like, what do you want me to do? It was legal," Adams said, according to the AP's Dennis Waszak Jr. "Next time, I might just tag him on the hip and say, "He's it," and play tag with him. I don't know what else you want me to do in that situation."

Jets head coach Adam Gase didn't believe the hit was "a bad play." While he understands the league's decision, he emphasized that Adams was in a no-win situation. 

"I'm trying to figure out what's the right thing to tell him as far as how to play that play," Gase said on Thursday. "When I saw it live, I didn't think that was a bad play. But that's what they called. They implemented a fine. Obviously he has an appeal process that he can go through, but we're trying to think - how do we correct it and how do we tell him? Because if Baker does something different that could've been a different result as far as maybe he gets a first down running it. Now everybody's wondering, 'why Jamal didn't tackle him?' It's a catch-22 for him."

The 23-year-old was also benched in the team’s loss. He told WFAN's Maggie Gray and Bart Scott that he "tried to anticipate a play, which I anticipated wrong, and I was benched ... It was a bonehead mistake."

Gase said the decision to pull Adams, after committing consecutive fourth quarter penalties, was his decision but wouldn’t classify that he’d benched his Pro Bowl safety.

“I thought he was getting fired up pretty good,” Gase told reporters. “I was like, ‘we need to be careful here.’ Because I was worried that something bad was going to happen. We need him for the next week. To me, I didn’t look at that as benching. That was more like, ‘Let’s calm him down.’”