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Mullen Quiet on Gators' Injuries; Kaiir Elam's Status Up in the Air

Has Florida Gators cornerback Kaiir Elam's knee injury taken a turn for the worse? It seems that way, but is hard to tell.

Dan Mullen wouldn't disclose any injury updates with media on Monday following the Florida Gators' upset loss to the Kentucky Wildcats.

“We have a bunch of guys that are banged up, so we’ll have – I’m not going to get into injuries for this week," Mullen said. "We have a bunch of guys that will be questionable. It’ll be too long for me to go through it all.”

This isn't the first time Mullen has kept injuries private, and that's not a huge problem. What is curious, though, is the lack of an update on cornerback Kaiir Elam - who has missed two games due to a knee sprain and was the topic of the injury-related question.

Elam suffered his injury in the first half of the Alabama game two weeks ago and finished the contest, playing all but four snaps. He would go on to miss the Tennessee game as he recovered from the injury, but last week, Mullen said and reiterated his belief that Elam could play against Kentucky.

"I meet with our trainers this morning. We'll know later this week but I'd say he's probable," Mullen said last week. "They feel pretty good about him being back in the game this week." 

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Mullen was asked if Elam remained on track to play in Wednesday's SEC coaches teleconference, to which Mullen replied "mhm."

Alas, Elam did not take the field against the Wildcats. When he was asked about Elam after the game, Mullen suggested that the cornerback didn't believe he was able to play after trying to practice throughout the week.

Although he wasn't needed in the loss to Kentucky - Wildcats quarterback Will Levis went 7-of-17 for 87 yards, a touchdown and an interception on Saturday - Elam is Florida's star defender. A projected first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, his availability is crucial for UF to be at the top of its game defensively.

In three games this season, Elam has posted eight tackles, an interception, three defended passes and a completion percentage allowed in coverage of 40 percent on ten targets, per Pro Football Focus.

With a long list of "questionable" players this week according to Mullen and the events that unfolded from Wednesday to Saturday of last week, Elam's status is undoubtedly up in the air as the Gators prepare for Saturday's homecoming game versus Vanderbilt.

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