Kaiir Elam
No. 24 – Buffalo Bills
Personal information
Born: (2001-05-05) May 5, 2001 (age 22)
Riviera Beach, Florida, U.S.
Height:6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight:191 lb (87 kg)
Career information
High school:
College:Florida (2019–2021)
NFL draft:2022 / Round: 1 / Pick: 23
Career history
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
  • Second-team All-SEC (2020)
  • All-Freshman SEC (2019)
Career NFL statistics as of 2023
Total tackles:55
Pass deflections:4
Player stats at NFL.com · PFR

Kaiir Elam (/kˈr ˈləm/ kai-EER EE-ləm;[1] born May 5, 2001) is an American football cornerback for the Buffalo Bills of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Florida and was drafted by the Bills in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

Early years

Elam grew up in Riviera Beach, Florida, and attended The Benjamin School, where he played basketball, football, and ran track.[2] As a senior, he recorded 71 tackles, three sacks and nine interceptions and was named the Palm Beach 5A-1A football defensive player of the year.[3] Elam was rated the fourth best high school football prospect of his class by ESPN and committed to play college football at Florida.[4][5]

College career

As a true freshman Elam played in all 13 of the Gators' games and made five starts, recording 11 tackles, three interceptions and four additional passes broken up and was named to the Southeastern Conference (SEC) All-Freshman Team.[6][7][8][9] Elam entered his sophomore season on the Jim Thorpe Award watchlist and was named preseason second-team All-SEC.[10] On January 10, 2022, Elam declared for the 2022 NFL Draft.[11]

Professional career

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand span 40-yard dash 10-yard split 20-yard split 20-yard shuttle Three-cone drill Vertical jump Bench press
6 ft 1+12 in
(1.87 m)
191 lb
(87 kg)
30+78 in
(0.78 m)
8+78 in
(0.23 m)
4.39 s 1.55 s 2.57 s 4.21 s 6.98 s 37.5 in
(0.95 m)
10 reps

The Buffalo Bills drafted Elam in the first round with the 23rd pick in the draft, trading up from 25th overall with the Baltimore Ravens to make the selection.[14][15] Elam marks the fourth straight defensive player the Bills have selected with a first round pick, following Gregory Rousseau in 2021.[16] He made his NFL debut in Week 1 against the Los Angeles Rams.[17] He recorded his first professional interception off Kenny Pickett in week 5 on October 9, 2022, in the Bills 38-3 win against the Pittsburgh Steelers.[18] The next week, on October 16, 2022, Elam recorded his second NFL interception off Patrick Mahomes during the Bills 24-20 win against the Kansas City Chiefs. He finished his rookie season with 41 total tackles, two interceptions, and four passes defensed in 13 games.[19] On January 15, 2023, in the Bills' playoff game against the Dolphins in the wild card round, Elam recorded his first career playoff interception off Skylar Thompson in the 34-31 win.

On November 2, 2023, Elam was placed on injured reserve.[20] He was activated on December 27.

On January 15, 2024, during the Bills playoff game against the Steelers in the wild card round, Elam committed pass interference on Diontae Johnson, giving the Steelers the ball and a fresh set of downs at the Bills' 3 yard-line. 2 plays later, he recorded his second career playoff interception off Mason Rudolph on a pass intended for Johnson in the end zone, ending the Steelers drive and preventing them from scoring their first points of the game. This interception occurred exactly one year after Elam recorded his first career playoff interception against the Miami Dolphins.

Personal life

Elam's father, Abram Elam, played college football at Kent State and in the NFL for seven seasons.[21] His uncle, Matt Elam, also played football at Florida and was a first round selection in the 2013 NFL Draft.[22] Matt Elam currently plays for the Orlando Guardians of the XFL.


  1. ^ "Kaiir Elam headed to Buffalo Bills". Youtube. April 28, 2022. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  2. ^ Lichtenstein, Adam (May 8, 2018). "Football: Kaiir Elam, done with track season, looking to lead Benjamin as a senior". The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  3. ^ Lichtenstein, Adam (December 19, 2018). "Palm Beach 5A-1A football defensive player of the year: Kaiir Elam". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  4. ^ "No. 4 athlete Elam commits to Florida". ESPN.com. February 7, 2019. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  5. ^ VanHaaren, Tom (February 6, 2019). "Kaiir Elam commits to Florida over Colorado, Georgia, Miami". ESPN.com. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  6. ^ Harvey, Demetrius (March 16, 2020). "Gators Cornerback Kaiir Elam Is Already Generating Buzz as a Leader". SI.com. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  7. ^ Sparks, Haley (September 17, 2020). "Kaiir Elam next in line to become best corner back for Florida". ESPN 98.1 FM - 850 AM WRUF. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  8. ^ Thompson, Edgar (September 16, 2020). "Gators CB Kaiir Elam: 'I want to be the greatest'". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  9. ^ Dubbin, Adam (July 3, 2020). "Kaiir Elam among ESPN's second-year college football players to make an impact in 2020". Gators Wire. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  10. ^ Goldkamp, Thomas (July 20, 2020). "Kaiir Elam named to Jim Thorpe Award watch list". 247Sports. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  11. ^ Silverstein, Adam (January 10, 2022). "Florida star cornerback Kaiir Elam declares for 2022 NFL Draft after three seasons". OnlyGators.com. Retrieved September 26, 2022.
  12. ^ "Kaiir Elam Draft and Combine Prospect Profile". NFL.com. Retrieved April 10, 2022.
  13. ^ "2022 Draft Scout Kaiir Elam, Florida NFL Draft Scout College Football Profile". draftscout.com. Retrieved April 10, 2022.
  14. ^ "2022 NFL Draft Listing". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  15. ^ Talbot, Ryan (April 29, 2022). "Bills draft Kaiir Elam, continue trend of selecting pre-draft visitors in Round 1 (5 things to know)". syracuse.com. Retrieved April 29, 2022.
  16. ^ "2021 NFL Draft Listing". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  17. ^ "Buffalo Bills at Los Angeles Rams - September 8th, 2022". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  18. ^ "Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills - October 9th, 2022". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  19. ^ "Kaiir Elam 2022 Game Log". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved February 3, 2023.
  20. ^ Glab, Maddy (November 2, 2023). "Bills sign DT Linval Joseph". BuffaloBills.com.
  21. ^ Elman, Jack (July 14, 2018). "Benjamin defensive back Kaiir Elam, father Abram, talk "The Opening"". The Palm Beach Post. Retrieved October 14, 2020.
  22. ^ Sammon, Will (December 23, 2018). "Kaiir Elam didn't need to play football, but now he wants a legacy of his own". The Athletic. Retrieved October 14, 2020.