Carolina Panthers

Pro Bowl safety Mike Adams: Panthers aren’t giving me job, I’m here to earn it

Panthers sign veteran safety Mike Adams

Panthers sign veteran safety Mike Adams to a 2-year deal.
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Panthers sign veteran safety Mike Adams to a 2-year deal.

Veteran safety Kurt Coleman is getting a little more experience in his secondary.

Just don’t ask the new guy how old he is.

On Friday, the Panthers announced the signing of Pro Bowl safety Mike Adams, who will turn 36 on March 24, to a two-year deal.

But seriously, don’t ask him about his birthday.

“Slow down,” he said. “No, no, no. You guys pay attention to that,” said Adams, when meeting with media for the first time at Bank of America Stadium.

“So what I have to say to that is, ‘Stop looking at my bio and watch the film.’ That’s what I have to say to everybody. My body of work speaks for itself. If you see my film and watch my film, now look at my bio, you won’t know how old I am.”

I’m coming here to compete. ... They’re not giving me the job. Because I don’t want that...I want to compete.

New Panthers safety Mike Adams

Adams is a strong safety by nature, while Coleman is comfortable playing free safety. Both will bring a high level of experience needed in a very young secondary, also manned by second-year corners James Bradberry and Daryl Worley and 24-year-old safety Tre Boston.

While Adams is expected by many to start immediately, again, don’t tell him that.

“I just want to make it clear. I’m coming here to compete,” he said. “They’re not giving me anything. They’re not giving me the job. Because I don’t want that. ... I want to compete. That’s why I’m here. I’m glad I have the opportunity to do that.”

Undrafted out of Delaware in 2004, Adams went on to an illustrious NFL career spanning four different teams (San Francisco, Cleveland, Denver and Indianapolis), during which time he racked up 737 tackles, 25 interceptions (two for touchdowns) and went to the Pro Bowl in back-to-back years, 2014 and 2015, when he was with the Colts.

Adams has also forced 11 fumbles and recovered 14.

He’s not the only veteran presence the Panthers’ defense will rely on – and the team’s new defensive coordinator, Steve Wilks, will likely appreciate them being around.

Carolina re-signed defensive end Charles Johnson, 30, to a 2-year deal just before he hit the free agency market this week. The team also smashed headlines by bringing back defensive end Julius Peppers, 37, on a 1-year deal. Peppers hasn’t recorded below seven sacks in a season since 2008.

After seven years away from the Carolina Panthers, Peppers is returning home.

One more time - don’t tell Adams how old some of his new teammates are.

“Stop looking at Julius Peppers’ bio! His too, stop looking at it!” quipped Adams. “Because his body of work is like, phenomenal.”

Jourdan Rodrigue: 704-358-5071, @jourdanrodrigue

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