Joe Mixon: I had to tough it out physically

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Bengals running back Joe Mixon went to the locker room in the first half of Thursday’s win over the Ravens and checked out of the game again in the second half so that the training staff could take care of a knee injury, but he returned to the game to help the Bengals drive for a pair of late field goals.

Mixon said after the game that he probably would have “played it safe” if the Ravens had not cut a 28-7 lead down to five points on a John Brown touchdown catch, but felt the team needed him to close out the win.

“I had to talk myself to going back in,” Mixon said, via the team’s website. “It’s mental toughness. It was real hard … It felt weird. The knee was hurting. The mental side of it is you always want to play 100 percent. When it’s bothering you, it’s hard mentally. I just had to check back in mentally and tough it out physically.”

Mixon ended the game with 21 carries for 84 yards and has run 38 times for 179 yards through the first two weeks of the regular season.