So you’re telling me the Ravens selected a hard-hitting safety that Ozzie Newsome publicly gushed about?
Judging by the quotes released by the Ravens Twitter account with Newsome saying, “I’ve never been so excited,” picking former Florida safety Matt Elam is fine by me.
In their first Ed Reed-less season in 11-years, the Ravens selected Elam with their 32nd overall pick. What what Elam lacks in size (5-10, 210 pounds), he makes up in aggression. “The way he played on tape is the way you have to play in the AFC North,” said Newsome.
Elam only played in 39 career games at the University of Florida before deciding to forgo his senior season with the Gators. The final 26 games, he started at strong safety. A first-team All American, Elam recorded 176 tackles (124 solo), six interceptions and 13 passes defensed.
The decision to pick Elam was unanimous amongst the four highest talent evaluators, according to Newsome. Between head coach John Harbaugh, assistant general manager Eric DeCosta and director of college scouting Joe Hortiz, Elam was the player that all four of the guys could agree on that they wanted.
Elam was the highest rated player on the Ravens board and now finds himself on his way to Baltimore for a press conference with the Baltimore media on Friday afternoon. Even though he had met with the Ravens at the combine, Elam never had an official visit to the Under Armour Performance Center.
Either Elam was shocked to be picked in the first round or he’s just a bad party planner as he is supposed to be one of four players to host a draft party in Palm Springs, FL on Friday night. Knowing that he now has an NFL future secured and a first-round label, he likely won’t care if he’s late or doesn’t even show up at all.
Welcome to Baltimore, Matt. We Ravens fans hope you already have a burning distaste for the Steelers and we’ll gladly teach you how to pick a crab if you don’t know how to already.