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Atlanta United 2020 Report Cards: Mo Adams

From afterthought to scapegoat to bright spot.

MLS: Atlanta United FC at Toronto FC David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

While Atlanta United’s 2020 season may have seemed never-ending due to its sadistic and torturous nature, it was actually quite brief compared to the norm. Despite its brevity, midfielder Mo Adams ran the gambit of the squad role spectrum. From being a complete afterthought in the preseason to being surprisingly featured a ton early in the season all the way to emerging as one of the team’s few bright spots during the season, Mo had quite the journey in 2020.

Position: Defensive Midfielder

Games Played: 13 (9 starts)

Assists: 1

What went right this season?

When everything that could go wrong for the club on the field this season seemingly did, Mo Adams stepped up in the center of midfield and looked like someone who could contribute. While that may seem like a backhanded compliment, that’s quite genuine when you consider the scope of the season. All hope was basically lost with three months left in the season with the team basically entering a never-ending Bill Murray in Groundhog Day loop of poor results and performances. However, every time Mo Adams got on the field in the middle of the park towards the end of the season he added some much-needed steel and calmness.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not naming Mo the Player of the Season or deeming him the savior of the midfield going forward or anything like that. But, when you consider the expectations of Mo Adams entering the calendar year and how it ended, it’s fair to say he has improved his standing within the squad very nicely.

What does he need to improve on?

This is pretty simple. Like most role players in MLS, he needs to improve his technique and composure on the ball. We all know his engine is his best attribute. He’s also not scared of any tackle on the field. If he can continue to get better on the ball and start to shine in tight spaces along with making good decisions, he could feasibly make the jump to promising role player to someone who makes it hard for the manager when he’s filling out the lineup sheet.

What role will he play in 2020?

On a team-friendly contract and not occupying an international slot, Adams is the perfect depth piece for a team hoping to contend for a high playoff seed. No one will be expecting him to start and play big minutes. But, during a long season, having someone capable of getting a start here and there while also being able to come off the bench late to see off a win is extremely valuable. Assuming the club go out and bring in some pieces to add to the midfield, that’s exactly the role he should play going forward.

Overall Player Grade: C+