POSITION: Strong safety
Highlights: A five-star prospect who was rated the No. 1 safety in the nation by Scout.com and No. 18 overall prospect by ESPN.com coming out of Texas in 2014, Adams certainly lived up to the billing in his debut season. Serving primarily as the nickel back, the sturdily-built safety displayed a knack for being around the ball and was sixth on the team with 66 tackles — capping a highly-successful freshman campaign with 10 tackles in the Music City Bowl. His solid defensive play helped him garner Freshman All-America honors and a spot on the All-Southeastern Conference Freshman Team.
Strengths: From the early days of preseason camp last August, Adams showed that he was going to play with passion and a swagger, which reminds some of former Tigers’ All-American cornerback Tyrann Mathieu. The speedy 6-foot-1, 211-pound Adams certainly doesn’t mind delivering punishing hits whenever he gets an opportunity and quickly earned a reputation as a tenacious defender to earn playing time with LSU’s veteran-laden secondary. A versatile athlete, Adams has the ability to play all over the secondary and can also fill a vital role in run support as a willing tackler in the box near the line of scrimmage.
Must continue to: Work at recognizing plays and disguising his coverages. Adams said he worked hard over the summer at film study with new defensive coordinator Kevin Steele and secondary coach Corey Raymond. “They helped me learn different techniques, especially in seeing the play before it actually happens,” Adams said. He admitted that was a weakness in his game last season, but it improved a bit when the game slowed down for him a little around midseason.
Projection: While he started only two games last season, mainly because of the presence of senior Ronald Martin, Adams should be the starter at strong safety and pair with senior free safety Jalen Mills to give LSU an experienced and speedy back end.
“The way he carries himself rubs off on us and it pushes us because we know what he expects. ... We expect the same thing of ourselves, so we have to be great in practice.”
— DE Lewis Neal, on new defensive line coach Ed Orgeron
OUT: LB Lamar Louis (strained pectoral), FB Bry’Keithon Mouton (undisclosed).
Next three up
SUNday: 9:15 a.m. (veterans), 3:45 p.m. (freshmen/selected veterans).
MONday: 9:25 a.m. (first full-squad practice).
TUESDay: 3:45 p.m. (walkthrough).