Unlike his teammate, Sharrif Floyd, Matt Elam expected to have to wait a little while before hearing his name called. However, he ended up not waiting as long as most people expected.
Elam was picked with the last pick in the first round by the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens lost a lot of players from their 2013 Super Bowl champion squad and Elam will be asked to step in at safety right away to fill in where pro-bowler Ed Reed used to play before being traded.
The only real knock on Elam was his height. At just 5’10” Elam lacks the prototypical size that most NFL teams look for at the safety position. Unfortunately for Elam, that is the only thing about his game that he can’t change.
At Florida, Elam showed ability to come down and play in the box, cover slot receivers, deliver bone-crushing hits and had a knack for always being around the ball. Elam was also a leader by example and an emotional sparkplug for Florida’s defense.
He spent the offseason working out strictly as a cornerback in an effort to show teams that he can also be successful in coverage. Elam looked comfortable in all the defensive back drills at Florida’s pro day.
Elam finished his career at Florida with 176 career tackles, 23.5 tackles for a loss, five sacks, six interceptions and three forced fumbles.
Elam has huge shoes to fill in replacing a legend and future hall of fame player like Reed but he has the talent to come in and be an impact player from day one.