Matt Elam is the only rookie starting for the Baltimore Ravens' defense. But the first-round pick isn't starting at his usual spot.
With James Ihedigbo at strong safety, the Ravens are going with Elam at free safety, where Ed Reed played for 11 seasons. Elam has allowed one touchdown but he has broken up only two passes. He's ranked 33rd among NFL safeties, according to Pro Football Focus.
"I'm playing a different position than I played in college, so I'm far away from the ball," Elam told The Baltimore Sun. "It's just me improving and getting comfortable in the new spot I'm in. I just feel like the plays are coming."
Ihedigbo has been one of the Ravens' best defenders this year. But you have to wonder if the team is going to find someone in the offseason to play free safety, so Elam can move back to strong safety.
Here's the rest of your wake-up call ...
Cornerback Lardarius Webb said Adrian Peterson is the best running back he's ever played against. "I hate to say it, I mean [there are] a lot of great backs around," Webb told Comcast SportsNet. "We have a great back on our team. But Peterson is something different.”
The Ravens' official website makes the case for nine players to make the Pro Bowl. My guess is three or four Ravens make it to Hawaii.
Ravens players voted linebacker Jameel McClain to be the recipient of the team's Ed Block Courage Award after he came back from a spinal-cord contusion. "It was an honor. It was an honor to get it from them," McClain said, via the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network. "Obviously, Lardarius was up for it, too, and he's been through a lot, too, just like me. So it was two deserving people and to get elected by them was great. But if you ask me, it should be me and Webby."