RB Joe Mixon - Cincinnati Bengals
|6-1, 228||Born: 7-24-1996||College: Oklahoma||Drafted: Round 2|
Week 21: bye week
Recent Stats and Projections
Recent Game Summaries
2017 Week 17 vs BAL (18 / 96 / 0 rush, 1 / 1 / 1 / 0 rec)
Mixon set the tone early with strong running. He showed the combination of patience, acceleration and ability to finish powerfully that could make him a special player in future seasons. Mixon did have one big mistake. After breaking through the line for a big gain, he didn't seem to sense the tackler coming from the inside and had the ball ripped loose. Mixon ceded nearly all of the third-down work to Giovani Bernard and the split backfield worked well.
2017 Week 16 vs DET (3 / 12 / 0 rush, 3 / 2 / 20 / 0 rec)
Mixon was off to a fast start and looked to be headed toward a big game with 32 yards in the first six minutes. However, he suffered an ankle less than halfway through the first quarter and near returned.
2017 Week 13 vs PIT (7 / 34 / 0 rush, 1 / 1 / 8 / 0 rec)
Mixon came out of the gates strong, ripping off solid gains of 8, 9 and 10 yards in the early part of the game. Mixon was running with excellent patience and flashed the incredibly unique mix of power, speed and change of direction that could eventually make him one of the league's top backs. His day was cut short when he was sandwiched between two defenders after a gain of 8 yards on a screen pass. He left with 6:44 remaining in the half and never returned due to the concussion.
2017 Week 12 vs CLE (23 / 114 / 1 rush, 3 / 3 / 51 / 0 rec)
For perhaps the first time all season, Mixon consistently had some space to operate and he took full advantage. Right from the start, it was clear Mixon was destined to have a big game. He charged through a big hole for a gain of nine yards on his first carry. The Bengals offensive line was able to open creases for Mixon to get through the line and Mixon looked fantastic once he reached the second level. He displayed excellent burst and finished runs with authority, getting low and running over Browns safeties on multiple occasions. The Bengals had some nicely designed screens to take advantage of the Browns aggressiveness. On one, Mixon perfectly chipped the blitzing linebacker and slipped into the flat to catch the pass with two blockers ahead of him and plenty of green. He went for a gain of 36 on the play. Mixon had a whopping 7 carries inside the red zone (including three inside the 10-yard line). He was tackled just shy of the end zone twice but finally scored late in the game on an 11-yard run off of left tackle. Mixon had 26 of the 30 Bengals running back touches and is fully entrenched as the workhorse back.
2017 Week 11 vs DEN (20 / 49 / 0 rush, 2 / 2 / 0 / 0 rec)
The touches weren't a problem for Mixon. Despite the Bengals running just 51 offensive plays, Mixon touched it 22 times. The issue again was the lack of holes to run through and getting hit in the backfield, as Mixon averaged just 2.2 yards per touch. Mixon did come close to an early touchdown. After an early 101-yard interception return set the Bengals up on the Broncos 1-yard line, Mixon had back-to-back carries but was stuffed just shy of the goal line on both attempts. While Mixon's numbers and yards per carry look dreadful, he actually played pretty well. He was able to generate positive yardage on most runs and kept the Bengals in manageable downs and distances.
2017 Week 10 vs TEN (9 / 37 / 1 rush, 3 / 1 / 3 / 0 rec)
With Jeremy Hill placed on injured reserve, Mixon is the clear lead back with Bernard being used as a change-of-pace and third down back. Mixon played 30-of-51 snaps and 9-of-11 running back carries. When Mixon had space, he was dangerous. He showed tremendous burst and the ability to change directions at high speed on early runs of 8 and 13 yards. Too often, the Titans had free runners hitting Mixon in the backfield right when he took the handoff. On back-to-back early carries, he was blown up for losses of 3 and 4 yards. The first loss came due to a well-timed Safety run blitz allowing a defender to arrive untouched off the edge. The next loss was due to a defensive tackle plowing through the line and meeting Mixon the instant he took the shotgun handoff. After an interception set the Bengals up with 1st-and-goal from the 4-yard line, Mixon pounded in the touchdown. He started left and then put his foot in the ground to cut back to the right through a big hole for the score. The Bengals tried to get Mixon involved as a receiver but failed. One screen attempt was set up well and would have likely gone for a big gain but Dalton threw too high for Mixon to handle. A later attempt at a screen was sniffed out by the Titans and blown up before Mixon could haul in the pass.
2017 Week 9 vs JAX (13 / 31 / 1 rush, 4 / 3 / 15 / 0 rec)
From a fantasy perspective, there was both good news and bad news for Mixon in Week 9. First, the good news: The Bengals coaching staff has finally accepted that Mixon is the best running back on the team and his usage rate and playing time continue to creep up. For the first time this season, the Bengals made Jeremy Hill inactive. Mixon played 72% of the offensive snaps against Jacksonville and received the carry or target on 61% of his snaps. Mixon touched the ball on nearly half of the Bengals snaps. He tied for the team in targets and received all but one of the running back carries. Given a standard game script at those usage rates, Mixon would have seen in the neighborhood of 30 touches and likely had a big day. Now, the bad news: The Bengals offensive line is a disaster and even with workhorse-level usage rate, Mixon may not make much of a fantasy impact. Cincinnati converted just one third-down all game and didn't have a drive of more than six plays all day. Holes were non-existent. Mixon did well to average 2.4 yards per carry given that the offensive line was physically dominated. Mixon did find the end zone on a 5-yard touchdown run. He took a shotgun snap, accelerated around the edge down the right sideline, dove and extended the ball just inside the pylon.
2017 Week 8 vs IND (11 / 18 / 0 rush, 3 / 3 / 91 / 0 rec)
Mixon played a season-high 62.5% of the snaps and handled 70% (14-of-20) of the running back touches. He wasn't able to get much of anything going as a rusher. His long gain was just seven yards and he was dropped for a loss on 3-of-11 carries. While Hill started and played the first few snaps, Mixon entered the game when the Bengals opening drive entered the red zone. He received a 2nd-and-goal carry from the 10-yard line and bounced it outside after finding no room up the middle. He appeared to have the edge but stumbled and fell untouched behind the line of scrimmage before he could turn it up field. Mixon did nearly all of his damage as a receiver out of the backfield. He caught a short swing pass along the right sideline, then jump cut past a defender into the middle of the field before being brought down for a 16-yard gain. Mixon's big play was a 67-yard reception on a well-designed screen pass. Mixon caught the ball short and had two blockers ahead. He turned what would have been a 20-yard gain into a near touchdown by making a safety miss in space near midfield. Mixon was tracked down and tripped up by the ankle at the 3-yard line on the play, just shy of what would have been his second touchdown of the season. Mixon made a spectacular one-handed grab on a 3rd-and-6 swing pass and then made a nice move to get past the sticks but he never put a second hand on the ball and had it knocked out for a costly fumble at the end of the run.
2017 Week 7 vs PIT (7 / 48 / 0 rush, 3 / 3 / 20 / 0 rec)
The usage of Mixon against the Steelers was perplexing. He was one of the best players on the field in the first half. He was the primary back on the Bengals second and third drives of the game. The Bengals scored touchdowns on both drives with Mixon doing much of the heavy lifting. Then, the Bengals went rotated in the other backs for the next three drives and Mixon didn't even see the field again until the game was out of hand late in the third quarter. He didn't have a single carry after the middle of the second quarter. Mixon provided a spark when he entered the game midway through the first quarter. He took his first carry for 25 yards. The play was supposed to go right behind a pulling guard but Mixon showed incredible quickness and vision to stop and cut the ball back the other direction and explode up the middle for the big gain. The play was a perfect example of the combination of size, speed and quickness that could make Mixon an elite back. Mixon had another highlight play to get the Bengals into the red zone on the next drive. He took a draw for 15 yards and made a few slick cuts to weave through the defense.
2017 Week 5 vs BUF (15 / 51 / 1 rush, 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
For the third straight week, Mixon played over half of the snaps (36 of 66) and dominated the backfield touches. He did well to make something from nothing on several occasions. He took one handoff that should have gone for a loss for an 8-yard gain. He had nowhere to run and bounced it outside where a linebacker was waiting to make the tackle. Mixon made a huge jump cut to the outside and then ran through the defender's diving tackle attempt before accelerating forward for the solid gain. Mixon's 5-yard touchdown came on a similar play. There was no room up the middle, so Mixon made a jump cut to the outside and outraced a defender to the edge before turning the corner and sprinting into the end zone. Mixon has shown the speed and lateral agility necessary to be a big-play threat and it is only a matter of time until he breaks off some long gains. Far too often, Mixon was swarmed in the backfield and dropped for minimal gain or a loss. Some of the Bengals issues running the ball are due to poor offensive line play but it also seems like teams are guessing right on run blitzes with regularity. The offensive coaching staff needs to use the bye week to determine if it is tipping plays with formations or tendencies.
2017 Week 4 vs CLE (17 / 29 / 0 rush, 4 / 4 / 19 / 0 rec)
For the second straight game, Mixon received the bulk of the snaps and touches at running back for the Bengals. He again totaled 21 touches but he is still waiting for his breakout performance. His first touch of the game was a 7-yard reception that was called back due to a holding penalty. Mixon had some opportunities to score his first touchdown. Mixon caught a pass inside the 10-yard line along the boundary but wasn't able to shake the lone defender to get into the end zone. He got a carry from inside the 5-yard line but was stacked up after a gain of just a yard. The short gain was a theme for Mixon who was regularly being hit before he could get past the line of scrimmage. Aside from a 10-yard run, it was tough sledding. Mixon's best play came on a short screen pass that looked like it would go for a handful of yards but he hesitated seemingly forever and bounced it outside to pick up 10 yards. Mixon is talented and getting enough touches to be an impact fantasy player but it is still unknown if the Bengals line is good enough to give him any creases. The Browns run blitzed a lot on Sunday so it is probably wise to not read too much into his poor showing.
2017 Week 3 vs GB (18 / 62 / 0 rush, 3 / 3 / 39 / 0 rec)
It was only a matter of time until we saw a changing of the guard at running back for the Bengals. It took a couple weeks and a pair of dreadful offensive performances but under new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, Cincinnati finally handed the keys over to Joe Mixon as the lead back. Mixon responded with 101 total yards on 21 touches (on 56% of the snaps) and helped put the team in position to pull off a major upset in Green Bay. Jeremy Hill started and played the first handful of snaps. When Mixon entered the game midway through the opening drive, he made an immediate impact. He caught a 3rd-and-3 swing pass, jump cut past a defender near the line to gain and sprinted for another 18 yards for a gain of 21. He ended the run with a strong stiff arm that forced the defender to grab Mixon's face mask to get him down, turning the play into an even bigger gain. Mixon stayed in the game to finish the first drive in the red zone and had a couple carries from just outside the 10-yard line that didn't generate much. Mixon looked good as a receiver throughout the game. He went motioned out to the slot, caught a high pass and lowered his head for a gain of nine yards. He stayed in on 3rd-and-8 and caught another nine-yard pass on the next play. The Bengals fed Mixon heavily in the second half. On the Bengals last drive in regulation, Mixon was key in bleeding the clock and getting it into field goal range to stake the Bengals to a 7-point lead in the final minutes of the game. He carried five times for 30 yards on the drive, highlighted by some impressive cuts and tough finishes. The drive ended on a down note, however. Facing 3rd-and-1, the Bengals lined up in the I-formation and were looking to hand it off to Mixon but he lost his footing before he ever got the ball and Dalton had to abort the handoff attempt and eat the ball for a loss. It was one of the key plays of the game as the Bengals were forced to settle for a field goal and left Aaron Rodgers enough time to engineer a comeback.
2017 Week 2 vs HOU (9 / 36 / 0 rush, 1 / 1 / 5 / 0 rec)
While he wasn't spectacular, Mixon was the Bengals best running back and led the team in rushing yards. Compared to Hill and Bernard, Mixon has shown the best ability to make something from nothing when the blocking is poor. On a seven-yard gain, J.J. Watt broke into the backfield for a potential tackle for loss and Mixon left him waving at air with a smooth jump cut to the outside. Mixon had another impressive play on a 7-yard reception. Jadeveon Clowney jumped on his back and Mixon carried him forward for another five yards. Mixon's playing time in Week 2 was extremely disappointing for his fantasy owners. He logged just 25% of the offensive snaps (16 total).
2017 Week 1 vs BAL (8 / 9 / 0 rush, 3 / 3 / 15 / 0 rec)
Mixon was a big part of the Bengals tailback rotation and played every snap on the second series of the game. After being stuffed on first down, he was able to make something out of nothing on the next play. Mixon caught a short dump off from Dalton, made the first man miss and then accelerated down the sideline for a 10-yard gain and first down. Mixon took his next carry for eight yards, showing nice patience before making a sharp cut to get upfield. The two highlight plays early in the first quarter were the only positive plays Mixon had on the day. He managed only seven more yards total on his final ten touches. Mixon played the second most snaps at running back (22) and likely would have led the team had the Bengals not fallen so far behind early in the game.
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