Dishon could not hide his feelings behind the Elliott mask. Asked how he felt about the first hurdle of his career, the fourth-year safety pulled down his blue, disposable mask and smiled hugely.
After sitting out the previous two games with a quad injury, Elliott exploded at the M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday as he returned to the field in a 34-6 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers.
In addition to his interruptions, Elliott also made a pass breakup on his first sack of the season and his second third-down pass. Overall the Ravens defense had a huge game against the offense of Uber-talented Chargers, but Elliott was the lead.
“It brings a lot of energy,” said head coach John Harbaugh. “He’s an experienced man, and he doesn’t improve things a bit in terms of intensity.… I think great players make everyone better.”
Elliott’s obstacle wasn’t working in any way. It was Justin Herbert Laser down the seam, a strawberry was ready to pierce a warship, borrowing the term of defensive coordinator Wink Martindale from this week.
But Elliott was forced to tighten Jared Cook and the throw was reduced, allowing a catch usually reserved for a wide receiver.
Elliott had nine interceptions in his three-year Texas career, including six in his junior season before announcing the NFL Draft. That’s part of what got him the nickname “Joker”. Yet in 25 NFL games, including 16 starts last year, he hasn’t pulled a single pass.
“It felt good, man,” Elliott said. “A long time is coming, a long time is coming. I’ve been going through a lot of hardships last year – for the last two years – so finally getting my first one is a blessing. Hopefully, God will bless me a lot more.”
Elliott had a sack that helped start the party. He hit the edge and the offensive line of the charger didn’t account for it, allowing Elliott to drill the Herbert on the 3rd and 5th.
Elliott also got third and tenth passes in the third quarter, with the Ravens leading by 19 points. The Baltimore offense touched down on an upcoming campaign, shattering the Chargers ’hopes of a comeback victory.
Elliott missed his first two NFL seasons with major injuries. He didn’t like going back to the sidelines. A mess sent him to the center of the Kansas City Chiefs ’epic victory. He returned to play for the Detroit Lions a week later, after which he too left early due to a quad injury.
“After the pushback, I was trying to get there and play, and then I went there and stretched my quad. You can do what you can,” Elliott said.
“It’s God’s time. When you’re ready to go, He’s going to let you go, and I think he was like, ‘Okay Dishon, now it’s time to go out and play.’ So, he let me out and did what I could and I was happy to be back – playing back with my teammates. “