As an 11-year veteran, Colts’ starting safety Mike Adams has likely seen it all. Signed in June of this offseason to a 1-year, $1,020,000 deal (now bargain of a contract), Adams was brought in to provide competition and veteran depth to the safety position. Instead, with the projected starter, Delano Howell, suffering from a season-ending neck injury, Adams has started all 6 games for the Colts at strong safety.
Sep 28, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts strong safety Mike Adams (29) against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
In those 6 starts, Adams has 23 tackles, 5 passes deflected, and 2 interceptions. For a 33-year old playing one of the most physically demanding positions in the NFL, Adams has proven that age is just a number. If he’s supposed to play like he’s 33, he sure hasn’t looked the part.
The advanced statistics provided by ProFootballFocus (subscription) grade Adams as the 10th best safety in the entire NFL (both strong and free safeties) at +4.6. Digging even further, his +5.8 in coverage is tied for 1st in the NFL. Out of the Top 10 overall graded safeties, he’s the oldest of the group, 3 years older than the 2nd oldest, Ex-Colts safety Antoine Bethea, the man he effectively replaced.
On the season, Adams has only been targeted by opposing quarterbacks just 8 times (the 58th most among active safeties), surrendering 7 completions for a paltry 89 receiving yards, with 2 interceptions, and an opposing Quarterback Rating of 73.4. For comparison purposes, consider that Antoine Bethea has been targeted more than double at 20 times (PFF).
Some of that can be attributed to the fact that earlier in the season, opposing quarterbacks would pick on his safety runningmate, the now suspended LaRon Landry (16 targets through 4 games), in coverage. However, Adams’ numbers still speak for themselves, as they’re that good.
On the season, Adams has only been targeted by opposing quarterbacks just 8 times (the 58th most among active safeties)
Adams hasn’t just been good, he’s been dominant anchoring the backside of the Colts’ secondary. Whether he can keep up his torrid pace, remains to be seen. Yet, the Colts have to be more than pleased with his addition.
Simply put, it’s hard to believe where they’d be without him. As mentioned, this is a safety group that already lost one of its projected starters to season-ending injured reserve, and its other starter to a 4-game PED suspension.
Of course, none of these numbers probably really matter to Adams, who’s disproving one in his own right, father time.