When the Cincinnati Bengals drafted Joe Mixon in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft, many experts called the pick risky. The reason for the risk is, three years ago when Mixon was 18, a woman attacked him in a sandwich shop and after she struck him twice, he responded by punching her. Charges were never filed against either Mixon or the girl but it was still a black eye on the character of Joe, simply because he was the stronger male and hit the smaller female. That one moment has caused Joe Mixon to be a risk for the rest of his NFL career to many people.

Joe Mixon and his assault incident

The incident with Joe Mixon happened in Norman, Oklahoma when Joe was a freshman for the Oklahoma Sooners. The girl was reportedly drunk and attacked Mixon in a sandwich shop next to campus after she alleges that Joe made homophobic comments about her friend. Witnesses allege that she began to yell racial slurs at Mixon and a security camera showed her strike him twice. Mixon then turned and punched her, knocking her out with the one strike, and breaking bones in her face. Mixon was never charged with a crime but the University of Oklahoma knew they had to make an example of him, so the Sooners suspended Joe for an entire year. After Mixon served his punishment, he returned and was a model player for the remainder of his college career.

Joe Mixon as a football player

The Cincinnati Bengals had interviewed Joe Mixon and felt comfortable drafting him in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. After serving the one-year suspension, Mixon returned and split carries with Samaje Perine (who the Washington Redskins drafted), and was spectacular. In 2015, he ran for 753 yards and seven touchdowns and then added 1,274 yards and 10 touchdowns in his second season.

He also combined to catch 65 passes for 894 yards and nine touchdowns through the air. He has the stench of the assault from three years ago hanging over his head, but his skills on the field are unquestionable and he has kept his nose clean since that time.

Joe Mixon and the Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Mixon is joining the Cincinnati Bengals, a team that already has two high-quality running backs.

Three years ago, Giovani Bernard looked like the next big thing in Cincinnati but he has never eclipsed 1,000 yards in a season, although he provides a solid weapon out of the backfield. In 2014, Jeremy Hill came in and took over the starting job, running for 1,124 yards but has slipped since then and watched Bernard gain his carries back. The word from the Bengals insiders is that Joe Mixon will eat into Hill's carries more than Bernard's but this is a three-headed running back situation to watch in 2017.