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sammy8887

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: November 07, 2008, 01:04:46 PM

Clayton's numbers aren't staggering: 24 receptions for 253 yards, both third on the roster behind Antonio Bryant and Ike Hilliard. But he is on pace for his best season since his rookie year, and considering Clayton was inactive for the season opener and only recently earned a starting spot, it could be an indication bigger things are ahead.

He made no predictions this week while reflecting on his tumultuous time in Tampa — he was seen as a star rookie in 2004 but a first-round bust in subsequent seasons. There were times it was as if he didn't exist in Gruden's eyes. His role in the offense was reduced to peripheral. He pressed while trying to make splashy plays and instead dropped routine passes.

But those around Clayton are beginning to see positive signs on the field and in the locker room.

"You can tell this is important to him," Hilliard said. "You can see it."

Well, of course. But isn't that because it's a contract year for Clayton?

"No," Hilliard says. "It's more than that. Trust me."

Quarterback Garcia said: "I especially see something this year. The hunger within him seems to be back in a way that he wants to be in a position to make a big play for this team. I think the more time he has on the field, the more opportunities that will be presented to him."

And with more time on the field, perhaps there will be more plays like Sunday's catch.

"For all the things he's been through in the last few years, for him to make a signature play in a game like (that) is huge," Gruden said.

Garcia and his receivers are politicking to make more attempts at the sort of big plays Clayton had against Kansas City. To do so, they will need Clayton to come through.

And unlike the past three seasons, that opportunity now exists for Clayton.

"I understand it's a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately league," he said. "Then, you take into account I was banged up, I wasn't getting many balls, and I did drop a couple of balls. When you get so few chances, you can't drop any. I failed when it came to that.

"You know you're not going to catch every ball. But when you know you're going to drop one but you'll have the opportunity to redeem yourself, it's different. In the past, I wasn't able to redeem myself. It just stopped with the bad (play). Now, it's definitely a new feeling."


http://www.tampabay.com/sports/football/bucs/article892961.ece

MBF

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#1 : November 07, 2008, 04:06:08 PM

Dude is playing well right now, I no longer cringe when the QB throws to him.

revfish

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#2 : November 07, 2008, 04:06:36 PM

Hope this is not just a contract year thing, but Clayton has definitely stepped it back up a notch since after the Green Bay game

alldaway

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#3 : November 07, 2008, 04:28:42 PM

My William Shatner impression.

This.Is.A.Contract.Year.


Feel Real Good

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#4 : November 07, 2008, 04:39:56 PM

I hate that it's gotten to the point where a 500 yard receiving season is "stepping it up".

FRG is the most logical poster on this board.  You guys just don\'t like where the logical conclusions take you.

keeponbucn

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#5 : November 07, 2008, 04:42:30 PM

Dude is playing well right now, I no longer cringe when the QB throws to him.

he's catching everything, that makes a difference

24 catches is garbage though

blitz

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#6 : November 07, 2008, 05:01:26 PM

Seems seperation remains a problem so look for the defenses to tighten up on MC.   He'll have plenty of opportunity to prove he's the real deal.  If not,  I see the Bucs going after a WR early in the draft. 

BTW  Bryant can throw a nasty block too but aren't WR suppose to run and catch the ball???

yuccaneers

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#7 : November 07, 2008, 05:27:30 PM

While he has 24 catches, it helps if he is looked at more by the quarterback.

Heres are the stat splits for the Bucs top five receivers

Bryant Target 73 times / Catches 45 / Drops 4 / % Caught 61.2% / % First Down 42.5 % / 8.1 Targets a game
Hilliard Target 38 times / Catches 33 / Drops 1 / % Caught 86.8 % / % First Down 60.5 % / 4.2 Targets a game
Clayton Target 34 times / Catches 24 / Drops 1 / % Caught 70.6 % / % First Down 35.3 % /  4.25 Targets a game (8 Games)
Galloway Target 26 times / Catches 12 / Drops 3 /  % Caught 46.2 % / % First Down 23.1 % / 4.33 Targets a game (6 games)

Seeing as Clayton is second on the team in % caught and third in terms of actual target ona  given pass play you would think the team would try to get him more involved in the passing game

In Football, RESPECT is never given freely by your opponent. It must be TAKEN from them...VIOLENTLY

Great players cost a lot of money but help win games. High-priced players - a byproduct of poorly run front offices with bad scouting departments - only cost a lot of money.
"Our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
Oliver Goldsmith

keeponbucn

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#8 : November 07, 2008, 05:31:52 PM

Good stats Yucc, well done as always.

He is back to his rookie season form where any ball in his general was caught. His rookie year was amazing and it's puzzling how a player loses that ability.

yuccaneers

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#9 : November 07, 2008, 05:35:46 PM

Think alot has to do with the topic of this thread, not to mention other things such as the added weight that he was asked to put on as well as the injuries, qb carousel, not to mention his own ego

In Football, RESPECT is never given freely by your opponent. It must be TAKEN from them...VIOLENTLY

Great players cost a lot of money but help win games. High-priced players - a byproduct of poorly run front offices with bad scouting departments - only cost a lot of money.
"Our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
Oliver Goldsmith

Boid Fink

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#10 : November 07, 2008, 08:02:19 PM

I hate that it's gotten to the point where a 500 yard receiving season is "stepping it up".
LMAO!!


benchwarmer69

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#11 : November 07, 2008, 08:15:39 PM

Dude is playing well right now, I no longer cringe when the QB throws to him.

I do.

I hate that it's gotten to the point where a 500 yard receiving season is "stepping it up".

good point. It IS B-S...

While he has 24 catches, it helps if he is looked at more by the quarterback.

Heres are the stat splits for the Bucs top five receivers

Bryant Target 73 times / Catches 45 / Drops 4 / % Caught 61.2% / % First Down 42.5 % / 8.1 Targets a game
Hilliard Target 38 times / Catches 33 / Drops 1 / % Caught 86.8 % / % First Down 60.5 % / 4.2 Targets a game
Clayton Target 34 times / Catches 24 / Drops 1 / % Caught 70.6 % / % First Down 35.3 % / 4.25 Targets a game (8 Games)
Galloway Target 26 times / Catches 12 / Drops 3 /  % Caught 46.2 % / % First Down 23.1 % / 4.33 Targets a game (6 games)

Seeing as Clayton is second on the team in % caught and third in terms of actual target ona  given pass play you would think the team would try to get him more involved in the passing game

See above lol.

An you know Gruden with his new playtoys...

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