There was question on exactly how bad the injury was prior to the MRI as a partial tear or sprain could have allowed Elam to participate towards the end of training camp and fully into the season. A full tear however, will sideline Elam for up to six months depending on recovery.
A big blow for Elam given that he had looked significantly better than in previous seasons, with this being a make-or-break season for the safety given his past performance. Elam was in competition with safety Will Hill for the starting job and even though Hill was the frontrunner, Elam had looked good enough through OTAs and the early part of camp to warrant a full competition for the starting position. Elam had not only looked good mentally, but physically as well.
"I've been working hard and eating right," Elam told The Baltimore Sun on Friday. "I'm doing everything the right way and getting myself right. I feel really good."
Harbaugh said on Sunday night that "I'm not real optimistic right now," which turned out to be the kiss of death. Reports are that Elam went to reach for a wide receiver on a play and got caused the injury. Head coach John Harbaugh discussed how Elam was feeling and how he had been doing in his eyes so far.
"I’m sure it’s very disappointing for him, and he told me that," Harbaugh said. "Here’s a guy who came back with a renewed attitude. He had a better approach than he’d had the first two years. He just had grown up a lot. He’s very serious and he was in tremendous shape, and then he gets a fluke injury. That’s disappointing."
Right now the injury is a blow to a secondary that is still relatively thin at the safety position. While the Ravens will likely have their penciled in starters as Will Hill and Kendrick Lewis, the fact that there had been a competition means that the Ravens were not 100% sold on Will Hill as the starter for a reason.
We'll see if the Ravens make any moves in the coming days to secure more depth at the safety position or if they feel comfortable enough with who they have at this time.