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Why Signing Joe Mixon Is The Bengals Biggest Offseason Priority

The Cincinnati Bengals must focus on keeping elite running back Joe Mixon in the fold.

With round one of the 2020 NFL Draft in the books, we can sit back and say that for the majority of day one, it went as planned. Tua Tuagovialoa went to the Dolphins, the Jets and Giants drafted offensive linemen, and the Bengals took Joe Burrow. With Cincinnati getting the man that they and everyone presumed they wanted since the day his career concluded at LSU, their biggest offseason priority now isn’t what you would think it would be.

Yes, they need to sign Joe. Not Burrow but rather Joe Mixon.

Yahoo Sports Frank Schwab reported on April 15th that the Bengals and Mixon are prepared for a holdout if the sides can’t reach an agreement. Mixon has one year remaining on his rookie deal for this upcoming season. After back-to-back seasons of 1,100 yards at only 23 years of age and seeing Christian McCaffery getting a deal that made him the highest-paid running back in NFL history for $16 million per season, we can make a reasonable hypothesis that Mixon will want his fair compensation.

But with the Bengals being known for making well… somewhat questionable decisions as a franchise when it comes to player personnel and signing free agents, history isn’t on their side. Forget that for a moment. If reports are surfacing from the Bengals front office that they’re prepared for a holdout, what does that tell us?

It means they’re not confident they are going to be able to sign Mixon. So hardly 24 hours after singing their quarterback of the future, they want to make it even more difficult on him by potentially taking away the most crucial piece of their offense for him ….yeah, let’s see how that works.

For better or worse, if Mixon does holdout, it won’t be an indictment against him but more so against the Bengals and their front office lacking a desire to make the moves necessary to show their fanbase and players the number one priority is winning.

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