Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon has struggled to stay on the field this year. After suffering what seemed like a minor foot injury in Week 6 against the Colts, he expected to be back with his team shortly.
Now, over five weeks later Mixon still hasn’t returned. Even worse, he hasn’t practiced since the injury occurred. Week after week, the Bengals have ruled him out of the weekend’s contest without taking further steps.
That’s finally changed ahead of Cincinnati’s game against Washington this Sunday.
According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, the Bengals placed Mixon on Injured Reserve on Saturday afternoon.
The #Bengals have placed RB Joe Mixon on Injured Reserve.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 21, 2020
The designation will sideline the 24-year-old running back for the next three weeks. Over that time period, the Bengals will play Washington, the New York Giants, and the Miami Dolphins.
Throughout his four years in Cincinnati, Mixon has proven himself as a steady young contributor in the NFL. The Bengals drafted him out of Oklahoma in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He rushed for over 1,100 yards in both 2018 and 2019, scoring 17 total touchdowns over the two years. In his six appearances in 2020, Mixon’s productivity has dipped as he averaged just 3.6 yards per carry behind a shaky Bengals offensive line.
Without their lead running back, Giovanni Bernard will maintain the team’s starting role. Bernard, a 28-year-old veteran has looked the part in Mixon’s absence. The long-time Cincinnati running back has had four total scores in the four games since Mixon’s Week 6 injury. Against an unsteady Washington front 7, Bernard could be poised for a big day.
The Bengals have a golden opportunity to pick up their third win of the year on Sunday.
Cincinnati kicks off against against the Washington Football Team at 1 p.m. ET on CBS.