Leagues: Under 18s Championships, WAFL Colts
SNAPSHOT: “A strong, versatile key defender, Adams has burst onto the scene in 2022 to break in to the WA state side and earn himself a National Combine invitation.”
Off the back of two injury riddled seasons, Jed Adams came into his top-age campaign uncertain as to whether he would even manage to get a game in the Peel Thunder Colts side. As important an asset off the field as he is on it, his teammates would be the first to tell you how integral a role Adams plays in providing the energy and creating camaraderie amongst teammates.
In his first time cracking into the state squad since Under 12s, Adams played an important role for WA in replacing the draft’s premier key defender, Jedd Busslinger. He showed off his wares as a strong, commanding lockdown defender who keeps his man quiet and makes sure his backline is set up as it should be.
Returning to WAFL level after a strong showing in the National Championships, Adams finished his season with a call up to the Thunder’s League outfit, replacing injured Dockers defender Joel Hamling. He impressed with 11 disposals and six marks in a strong showing against one of the competition’s leading key forwards. Unfortunately, off the back of this game, Adams went under the knife for shoulder surgery, ending his season early and leaving him unable to take part in the National Combine testing.
+ Decision making
- Defending at ground level
A strong and versatile key defender, Adams is one of many players who came into 2022 with limited exposure and impressed immensely. Level headed and a smart defender, Adams is just as important to his side off the field as he is on it. He has proven in 2022 that he can perform strongly as the lockdown defender taking on the most dangerous key forward on many occasions and shutting them down more often than not.
Averaging a tick over five marks per game, including a monster 11-mark outing early in the season, Adams took many impressive contested grabs. Though, his smarts to know when it’s best to forgo the mark and kill the ball with his fist or take his man out with good body use is one of his best assets.
His role as a leader and general in defence is one that is harder to catch if you’re not looking for it, but it’s importance cannot be understated. Be it the respect he has earned off the field as a person, or due to the merits of his own defending, he makes the calls when he needs his teammates to set up better and they listen - an under-appreciated role in the backline.
His ability to play as an intercept defender is perhaps overshadowed by his lockdown work, but it is not uncommon to see him leave his man and pluck to an errant ball or fly in front of the pack to take one uncontested. He is a smart user of the footy out of defence, often taking the safe, possession holding option if there isn’t a clear avenue to go forward, resulting in very few turnovers.
Showing flashes in other roles - pinch hitting in the ruck and even managing three goals when moving forward - Adams provides a great option for clubs looking for young key position players. His upside is there and with more exposure or a clean run at it, he could certainly continue to show great improvement.
DRAFT RANGE: Late
There is certainly a need for key defenders and with few top-end options, Adams’ chances are only heightened. His record with injury may prove a concern for clubs, with major injuries to his PCL and shoulder in each of his last two seasons potentially leading them to go with seemingly safer, less injury prone options. Though, his footballing brain and ability have spoken for themselves this season and he could be considered one of the leading tall defenders in this crop.
Under 18s Championships