Ravens safety Matt Elam calls Calvin Johnson 'pretty old,' curious to know if he's physical

Matt Elam called Calvin Johnson "old" and wonders if he'll be physical against the Ravens. - Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

The rookie just gave the Lions some bulletin board material.

Fact: Calvin Johnson is the best receiver in the NFL.

Fact: Matt Elam hasn't had a great rookie season for a first-round pick, as he's yet to record an interception and has been suspect in tackling.

Based on these two facts, it's a bit surprising for Elam to seemingly call out Megatron for being a receiver with some years on his resume.

"He's pretty old, so I don't know how physical he'll be,'' Elam told the Associated Press. "He's a big guy, but he's older. I guess when they get older they're not going to be as physical, you know what I'm saying? We're going to have to be physical, make him uncomfortable.''

To Elam's credit, he also called Johnson, "Big, fast, athletic, unstoppable, freak."

Most likely, there were probably no ill intentions from Elam's point of view. In his young, confident mind, Elam's probably thinking that maybe the Ravens' best chances of winning will be to be more physical than Johnson at the line of scrimmage.

But this quote will certainly catch Johnson's eye, considering he's 28 years old and in the prime of his career. If 28 is old then most of the league's best are apparently near the end of their careers. Elam probably thinks of Johnson as old, given that he's just 22 years old.

Chalk it up to a rookie mistake from Baltimore's starting free safety.


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