A bizarre and uncomfortable scene unfolded at a Jets’ fan forum Monday in Florham Park when a season ticket holder asked rookie safety Jamal Adams his reaction to the growing concern regarding brain injuries in the NFL.
“I can speak for a lot of the guys that play the game, we live and breathe (football) and this is what we’re so passionate about. Literally if I had a perfect place to die, I would die on the field,” Adams said.
The 100-plus fans in attendance then began to applaud, with commissioner Roger Goodell sitting right next to Adams at the front of the auditorium inside the Jets facility.
“That’s not a lie,” Adams continued when the clapping died down. “There’s so much sacrifice that we go through as a team, and just connecting as one and winning ball games, there’s nothing like playing the game of football.”
Goodell spoke with local media after the conclusion of the fan forum and addressed Adams’ comments.
“What I think he was really making the point of is how much he loves the game and how passionate he is for the game,” Goodell said. “He loves playing it, and it’s just something that means a great deal to him, and I get the emotion of that.”
When asked if he was thrown off by the fans’ applause, Goodell said: “I think the fans understood the emotion of what he was saying, which is, we love the game, and I think they love the game. But I don’t think anyone took it as directly as that.”