There were no walk-backs, no second thoughts, no regrets. When Raiders receiver Davante Adams met with the media following his strong comments on the state of the team and the culpability of his teammates in Las Vegas’ uninspiring 1-2 record, he said he absolutely stood by everything he said.
Adams said his message landed exactly how he thought it should land, at least with those who needed to hear what he’d said.
“For the people that I needed it to, it did,” Adams said this week. “The rest of the people, it’s no surprise, it’s no secret that I truly don’t care what people think. As long as the people it was intended for understand the message, that’s what’s most important to me.”
Of course, outside the Raiders’ locker room, Adams’ postgame screed — measured and focused as it was — was taken as a sign that he was unhappy with the team and its coaches, that maybe he wanted GM Dave Ziegler to send him elsewhere. Adams said that, no, it was nothing like that.
“For the people that didn’t understand the message, it was not a shot at anybody or directed at the front office here, that was about us as a football team and the players that control things, that have the most control over what happens in the outcome of games,” Adams said.
That, of course, is the players.
Raiders Have Yet to Record a Takeaway
The players have, no doubt, been disappointing. The Raiders have yet to force a turnover this season, and are minus-7 in turnover differential having given away six interceptions and one fumble. That’s tied for worst in the NFL. They’re 28th in points scored and 24th in points allowed, and have the league’s worst-ranked rushing game.
Part of Adams’ frustration, expressed on Sunday night after the lackluster loss to Pittsburgh, was that he seemed to feel his teammates were not taking their jobs as seriously as they needed to–that there was lip-service being paid to making improvement, but not enough work.
“We’ve got to be real with ourselves,” Adams said. “We get these opportunities to watch tape together and do these constructive things, we’ve got to get something out of it. That’s not just talking, but it’s about putting it to action and figuring out what’s wrong and doing something about it so that way when we go out there the next time it looks different.”
Davante Adams: ‘I’m a Pretty Direct Dude’
Adams himself, even at age 31, has been stellar this year. He has caught 25 passes in three games, with 322 yards and three touchdowns. He still ranks among the best receivers in the NFL, if not the best–heading into the season, Pro Football Focus had Adams ranked No. 1 among all receivers, ahead of the Vikings’ Justin Jefferson and the Dolphins’ Tyreek Hill.
He is still a very valuable part of what the Raiders are trying to do, and he tried to make it clear his complaints on Sunday were about the players, not about the coaching staff or front office.
“I think it is a really cowardly and small thing to take shots at coaches when we do have a lot to do, the most to do with what happens out there on the field,” Adams said. “I’m a pretty direct dude, as you know. So, if it was that, I wouldn’t personally decide to go to the media about it, I would take care of it the way a man is supposed to.”