Mark Clayton Helps Lead Ravens To Another Win Over Bengals

Laurie RillCorrespondent IDecember 1, 2008

When Clayton took a hand off from Joe Flacco and ran toward the right sideline, I'm sure nobody expected him to loft the ball into the air behind Hall for a 32- yard touchdown in the third quarter. It was one of MANY highlights of the Ravens 34-3 victory over the Bengals on Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium.

The former first-round draft pick out of Oklahoma also caught five passes for a season high 164 yards, including a 70-yard touchdown catch.

Clayton threw his first touchdown pass in high school, but had yet to do so in his NFL career.

"We've known he could do it," Coach John Harbaugh said.

The Ravens have been practicing this and many other plays in practice, but this was the first time they unveiled this particular play in a game.

"I'm just thankful coach trusted me with the ball to make a play like that." Clayton said.

There was still more to come from Clayton, however, when he topped his TD pass with a 70-yard TD catch which gave Baltimore a 27-3 lead in the third quarter.

Clayton entered yesterday's game with just 23 receptions for 311 yards and two touchdowns, but this was a far different experience Sunday.

Clayton’s contribution drew some coverage away from Derrick Mason as Baltimore's offensive coordinator Cam Cameron was able to rely upon a complementary down-field target for a change. Mason caught six passes for 91 yards.

This was the Ravens' sixth road game in eight weeks...Baltimore swept Cincinnati for the first time since 2002.  Ravens' starting RB Willis McGahee was active, but did not play.  The Ravens have won six of their last seven games.  The Bengals were eliminated from playoff contention before the game began.

I'm sure other Ravens fans across the nation are thankful to FINALLY have an offense in Baltimore, although the schedule doesn't get any easier. They face the now 7-5 Washington Redskins next week at M&T bank stadium in Baltimore. Both teams will be fighting to win a game that could easily tell which team will be going to the playoffs and which will not. Either way, the Ravens have a lot to be thankful for in Baltimore this season.