It reflects how Elliott, after spending the first seven years of his NFL career with the Dallas Cowboys, has quickly felt at home as a Patriot.
“I think if you look at my play style and the culture of this team, it’s a good match. I think I’m a good fit,” he said Wednesday.
“I was at home for a long time, so I thought I definitely should come in and be kind of an energizer boost. The transition has been good. I’ve been getting along with the team. Love the coaches, love the atmosphere and love this program. Just having fun.”
As for the idea of proving doubters wrong, he said: “I don’t think any outside entity could put more pressure on me than any pressure I have for myself. So, it’s not really to go out and prove anything to anyone but just go out there and show what kind of player I am.”
The Patriots officially announced Elliott’s signing on Aug. 16, and as part of coach Bill Belichick’s preference to limit hype, Elliott wasn’t made available to speak with reporters until seven days later.
The 28-year-old player referred to Belichick as a “great coach” and “funny guy” Wednesday, adding that he “demands excellence of his team and knows how to get it out of it.”
Belichick has gradually increased Elliott’s workload over the past week, and, in Wednesday’s full-pads practice, Elliott’s presence at the goal line was notable when he showed impressive vision and decisiveness to cut back between the right guard and right tackle for a would-be touchdown.
Elliott has been taking snaps behind starter Rhamondre Stevenson, with whom he shares the same agent. The two met in 2021 after a Patriots-Cowboys game and have remained close.
“He’s a back that has a similar running style as me, so I think we’ll be able to complement each other very well,” Elliott said.
Teammates have noted Elliott’s transition over the past week, which began when he traveled with the club to Green Bay last week for practices with the Packers.
“He looks good. You can tell he’s a guy that’s hungry, and motivated, and wants to prove he’s still Zeke,” veteran safety Adrian Phillips said. “I think he is, and it’s been fun to have him.
“He wants to come in and learn what the culture is here. He hasn’t tried to step on anyone’s toes — the first thing he did was come in and say, ‘What’s up?’ to everybody’ — and wants to get to know everybody. He’s a cool guy.”
Elliott could see his first action as a Patriot in Friday’s preseason finale on the road against the Tennessee Titans. He said he stayed in good physical condition over the offseason.
“I was at home, but I was definitely working my tail off,” he said. “I think I did one day of conditioning after I signed, and they threw me right in there. I feel good. I feel like I’m ready to play.”