Awesemo Daily Fantasy Sports
Awesemo Fantasy Football
Awesemo Odds & Sports Betting
Awesemo Podcast Network
Awesemo Side Action
Odds Shopper by Awesemo
Connect with us

Fantasy Football

Is Joe Mixon The Top Value RB This Year? 2021 Fantasy Football Rankings for Yahoo, ESPN & CBS Leagues

Matt Gajewski



Joe Mixon Fantasy Football Draft Rankings 2021 expert tips advice cheat sheet draft mock draft Bengals running back las vegas betting odds lines picks predictions Yahoo ESPN CBS DraftKings FanDuel

Now entering his fifth season in the NFL, Joe Mixon will look to right the ship after an injury-plagued 2020 campaign. He has not quite lived up to his draft hype, but Cincinnati’s offensive environment has not done him any favors. Can Joe Mixon make the jump up the fantasy football draft rankings this season?

Dominate your draft this year with news and picks from Awesemo's new Fantasy Football YouTube channel
Get a Risk Free First Bet up to $600!

Fantasy Football Player Previews: Joe Mixon

Joe Mixon’s Production Profile

Prior to his injury-riddled 2020 campaign, Mixon notched back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons. Mixon’s best season came in 2018. He rushed for 1,168 yards and eight touchdowns while adding 43 receptions. The Bengals finished 6-10 that season, but Mixon produced, nonetheless.

However, 2019 looked a little different. The Bengals finished 2-14, and struggles trickled down to Mixon. Despite carrying the ball 41 more times, Mixon finished with 1,137 yards and five touchdowns. He suffered from horrendous offensive line play and an inefficient offense and struggled to translate opportunity into production.

2020 looked better at first glance. Mixon carried 119 times for 428 yards and three touchdowns. He also added 21 receptions in his six games played. However, Mixon’s body crumbled under the increased workload. After six games Mixon missed the rest of the 2020 campaign with a foot injury.

Check out Matt Gajewski’s breakdown of Joe Mixon in the 2021 Fantasy Football rankings and draft cheat sheet for Yahoo, ESPN and CBS leagues.

Opportunity & Efficiency

From an opportunity perspective, Mixon’s brief 2020 season presented a step in the right direction. He previously ceded work to Giovani Bernard, but his opportunities per game (carries plus targets) jumped 24.2. In his healthy games Mixon handled 90.1% of the carries and 56.5% of the running back targets. In total Mixon saw 10.9% of the Bengals targets.

From an efficiency perspective, Mixon’s numbers declined in 2020. His 2.55 yards after contact per attempt and 14 missed tackles were a step back from his 2019 numbers. In 2019 Mixon recorded 877 yards after contact, averaging 3.15 per attempt. Also forcing 52 missed tackles, Mixon’s limited production fell mostly on putrid offensive line play. Mixon’s 2020 number may be attributed to similar poor offensive line play or even a small sample of six games. At this point it is hard to tell.

2021 Fantasy Football Expectations

On top of Mixon’s contractual investment, the Bengals continue to indirectly invest in him. This offseason they let Bernard walk in free agency. They head into the season with career journeyman Samaje Perine and sixth-round rookie Chris Evans behind Mixon. Outside of an unexpected step forward from a rotational player, Mixon’s opportunity should be unquestioned.

Cincinnati also continues to improve on offense. After their 2-14 season in 2019, the Bengals jumped to 4-11-1 last year. Joe Burrow also went down in Week 11, complicating matters. Burrow expects to return this year, and the Bengals have made upgrades around him, adding Ja’Marr Chase in the top five of the NFL Draft and investing in the offensive line. The Bengals brought in Riley Reiff through free agency and Jackson Carman in the second round of the NFL Draft.

Finally, head coach Zac Taylor enters his third season. Last year Taylor had little time to integrate Burrow into an evolving offense due to a shortened offseason. While Cincinnati finished 13th in pass rate and plays per game last year, Taylor has shown signs of wanting to play uptempo, pass-first football. The entire Bengals offense could take a step forward in 2021.

Don't Miss Our FREE Fantasy Football Content

Want to know the latest news, rankings, draft strategy and picks for Fantasy Football? The Awesemo team of Fantasy Football experts have three all-new avenues for you to get all of our fantasy football content for the 2021 season. Subscribe to our Awesemo Fantasy Football YouTube channel, follow the Awesemo Fantasy Football Twitter account @AwesemoFantasy and Facebook Page @AwesemoFantasyFootball for all of our current fantasy football mock drafts, rankings, draft strategy, sleepers and busts, player profile videos and more for the 2021 Fantasy Football season. Find all of our content at our Awesemo Fantasy Football page.

Bottom Line

While Mixon has not produced at the same level as the top five backs, he should have every opportunity to enter that conversation. With Bernard departing, Mixon’s workload is unchallenged. However, the main concern is still overall efficiency from a rebuilding team. Even with a step forward, will that be enough to challenge for top-five running back status?

Cincinnati projects for 6.5 wins across sportsbooks, but Mixon provides an elite workload. Mixon comes off the board at pick 15.7 on Underdog Fantasy, just behind Cam Akers, Austin Ekeler, Nick Chubb and Aaron Jones. Each of these backs project to cede work to complementary backs to some degree. If everything falls into place for Mixon, there is a case that he is the most underrated player in the first two rounds of fantasy drafts.

Thanks for reading to the end of this article! If you appreciate this free content and want to see more of it every day, you can help us out by sharing this article on social media!

Want more Fantasy Football picks, strategy, and draft advice? Check out our Fantasy Football Rankings, our Fantasy Football Printable Cheatsheets, our best fantasy sleeper picks, and our Fantasy Football Player Profiles. If all that free content isn't enough for you to dominate your Fantasy Football draft this year, check out the Awesemo Fantasy Football Draft Kit, which includes sophisticated tools and proprietary fantasy data that you can only get from us. We've also got a brand new Fantasy Football YouTube Channel where you can tune in every day for the best fantasy videos in the business.

Matt Gajewski graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Economics. Matt has worked in the fantasy industry for the past four years, focusing on DFS and Sports Betting. Matt specializes in NFL, College Football, College Basketball, XFL, and MMA. With GPP victories across the major sports, Matt also qualified for the DraftKings 2020 Sports Betting Championship and won a seat to the College Basketball Tourney Mania final.

More Fantasy Football