Kenneth K. Lam / Baltimore Sun
Clausen started one previous game against these same Seattle Seahawks in Week 3. He completed 9 of 17 passes for a whopping 63 yards in a 26-0 loss for his previous team, the Chicago Bears.
In 12 previous career starts, he had not even cracked 200 yards passing. That’s hard to do in the modern NFL.
Given that context and his lack of time to get comfortable with his Ravens teammates, anything short of a disastrous performance would have been just fine.
Clausen didn’t get off to a promising start, looking hesitant to throw on his first drive and eating a sack on third down because of it.
But he performed reasonably well after that, despite playing behind a reconfigured offensive line, with little running game to help.
Clausen benefited from a few plays on which the Seahawks literally did not cover a Ravens wide receiver. But he consistently found Kamar Aiken, Jeremy Butler and Daniel Brown for intermediate gains and made more good reads than bad. Though he threw an interception after the game was out of hand, he avoided the catastrophic mistakes that plagued Matt Schaub the previous two weeks.
“Going in there, in that situation, and to be under fire like that, against the defense that we were playing, it speaks very well for him,” Harbaugh said.
I know it’s hard to be excited about a quarterback who didn’t lead his team to a single touchdown. But we’re grading on a steep curve these days.