Joe Mixon vows to make up for rare fumble

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The Bengals paid Joe Mixon for what he’s capable of doing.

Now, he wants to pay them back for what he almost never does.

The Bengals running back vowed to make it right, after his rare fumble in last week’s loss to the Chargers.

I owe the team. I owe it to them. Thursday is up,” Mixon said in reference to this week’s game against the Browns, via Geoff Hobson of the team’s official website.

Mixon’s last fumble came on Dec. 31, 2017, and last week’s proved costly, as the Chargers turned it into a game-winning field goal. But instead of turning away from it, Mixon is leaning into it, watching it back on tape about 50 times.

“I played it back even when my coach showed me. I don’t like looking at it. But . . . ‘Run that back one more time. Run it one more time.’ Different angle,” Mixon said. “It sucks, but at the same time, no matter how bad it is, you have to learn from it. You have to just to see how you could have attacked it differently. How you could have held the ball and made a move off of it and these are things I’m accessing in my head. . . .

“What could I have done in that situation? Of course, you always say, ‘Just put the ball away.’ The ball was in great position. It got a little low, but it was still in great position. The guy made a hell of a play, but it was never supposed to happen. At the end of the day I learned from it and come Thursday I’m going to be ready.”

Mixon said his focus this week will be on the particulars of ball security, hoping the fundamentals stay fresh in his mind.

“It definitely hurt. Definitely disappointed. It’s definitely inexcusable,” Mixon said. “It’s something I will never get used to doing. From there just got to learn from it. Learn from the mistake and bounce back, hopefully look back to go ahead and go on another streak . . . it’s definitely going to add fuel to the fire.”

When you go two full seasons without one, such details tend to stand out in your mind.