After a gruesome start to his 2019 campaign, Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon seemed to have finally turned a corner. That was, until a horrendous showing in Week 6 where he failed to rush for even 1.5 yards per carry average, all while touting the rock a meager eight times.
Can Mixon be trusted in your fantasy football lineups for Week 7 against the Jacksonville Jaguars? Or is his usage, mixed with Bengals offensive line troubles, too much to overcome for the once highly thought of running back? Let’s find out.
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Joe Mixon’s Fantasy Outlook vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
In the first two weeks of this season, Joe Mixon completely and utterly burned fantasy owners with his production, or lack of it. The former Oklahoma Sooner totaled just 27 rushing yards over that time span, and failed to find the endzone.
The Bengals head coach Zac Taylor had seen enough of the team’s run game struggles, and decided to feature arguably the team’s most talented playmaker. Mixon would go on to average nearly 19 touches per game in the following three weeks, accumulating a solid 88.6 yards from scrimmage per game. Mixon also saw his yards per carry increase exponentially from a putrid 1.61 in the first two weeks, to an impressive 4.3+ ypc over the next three weeks.
However, just as everything seemed to be all good on the fantasy front for Mixon and his owners, his statistics came crashing down in Week 6. Mixon was essentially fazed out of the offense, touching the ball a total of just 10 times, despite the contest ending in less than a one-score game.
The most puzzling thing about Mixon’s lack of usage comes predominantly in the passing game. Only two teams throw the ball more than the Bengals this season. However, Mixon averages just 2.3 receptions per game.
Let’s not focus on the fact that having Andy Dalton throw the ball an average of 40+ times a game is a horrendous formula for success. Rather, let’s focus on the fact that an “offensive genius” refuses to involve a guy in the passing game who is coming off a 43 reception campaign just one season ago, and as a prospect was likened to Le’Veon Bell for his receiving prowess.
So where do Mixon owners go from here? Well, for a positive outlook, he has a plus-matchup in Week 7. Facing off with the Jacksonville Jaguars has a more horrific sound to it than it actually is. The Jags have been quite generous to opposing running backs this season, allowing the seventh-most fantasy points to the position.
Over their last two games, those numbers get even worse. Jacksonville has allowed a combined average of 231 yards from scrimmage to RBs over that time span. They also allowed 6+ receptions to starting running backs in each of those two games. This means that if there was ever a week for the Bengals to get Mixon going in the passing game, it would be this one.
Should You Start or Sit Joe Mixon in Week 7?
I don’t trust the Bengals to keep Mixon involved the way he should be. While some may have drafted him as an RB1 this season, he will never see those types of numbers on a consistent basis. However, if Zac Taylor and company can’t get Mixon going in this matchup, there’s little hope to no hope for Mixon going forward.
Mixon is an RB3 this week when you take into consideration his recent usage and struggles. He has a chance to push for RB2 numbers due to an inviting matchup and his high-end skill level.