Now, with a new two-year deal with the Lions freshly inked, the powerful defender is comfortable with the spotlight on him as he enters the 2021 finals series as a key part of Chris Fagan’s side.
The Lions knew what Adams could bring to the side when they lured him to the Club at the end of 2018. But when injuries restricted him to 10 games in his first season and just one last year, it was the 28-year-old who began to wonder if he would get the chance to show it.
A streak of 14 consecutive games throughout the middle part of the year put those doubts to rest as he produced the best football of his career.
“I had a good year in 2017, but in terms of my importance to the team I’d say this is my best year,’’ he said.
“I am consistently playing a role each week that is important and of value to the club.
“I’m confident, I wouldn’t say I’m carried away and you are always aware you can get a bag kicked on you.
“It’s not comfort, but it is a feeling like I belong out there again.
“Sometimes in the past I’ve felt I’ve had to change every week and reinvent the wheel, but now I feel I can play my way and if I can do that to somewhere near the best of my ability it will stand up each week.’’
Adams newfound confidence was tested when he suffered a minor setback after developing a stress reaction in his foot following the Rd 17 loss to St Kilda.
However, the rehabilitation process went smoothly, and he returned to play a key role as the Lions clinched a qualifying final berth with a 38-point victory over West Coast at the Gabba on Saturday.
He will now embark on a finals campaign full of enthusiasm and with the knowledge he is recording career best numbers for kicks and contested marks.
“Six months ago I wondered if I would be having very different stories written about me, or no stories written about me at if I fell out of the game, so everything that has happened this year has felt like a bonus and rekindled my love for the game,’’ he said.
“I love game day, I love coming to the club to work every day and when you are out injured that can start to wane because the doubts can creep in about what your value is.
“So, to get back and feel valued by the team and the club is, on a personal level, really nice and to know that I will be around for a couple more years is a blessing.’’
Lions GM of Football Danny Daly said Adams’ signing had provided the Club with a huge boost heading into September.
“He’s had some injury battles Marcus and it is a real testament to his determination that he’s been able to work his way back to full fitness this year and become a really important player for our team,’’ he said.
“We are looking forward to what he can do throughout the finals and are excited to see what the next couple of years will bring.’’